[00:00:00] Corey: Welcome to the Vertical Go-To Market Podcast, where you'll discover new opportunities to grow your business from seven figures to eight from the world's most successful agency and B2B SaaS executives. I'm your host, Corey Quinn. Let's jump into the show. Today, I'm joined by Chase Williams. Welcome Chase.
[00:00:20] Chase: Thanks for having me, Corey.
[00:00:22] Corey: Super excited to have you here today. And for our conversation, just for context, could you share a little bit about who you are and the work you do?
[00:00:30] Chase: Sure. My name is Chase Williams. I'm the co founder of Market My Market. We are a digital agency focused on legal marketing. I know that me and Corey crossed paths back in the day when you were at Scorpion.
So I have a ton of respect for Corey and Scorpion and what you're doing. So um, Excited to be on the podcast today to share the knowledge I've learned and the things I've failed at. And those, I think those are the most important things to kind of talk about as a failure.
[00:00:53] Corey: Beautiful. I'm super excited about that.
And yes, we were, I would say competitors back then. It was a firm we always deeply respected going up against. So I'm excited to have you here and to get a chance to learn more about your story and what got you to where you are today. For context, for the listeners, what could you share about the number of clients or the revenue or anything you're comfortable sharing about Market My
[00:01:17] Chase: Market
yeah, sure. So right now I think we have about, we're in the millions in revenue, which is good. And it took a while to get there. And I think one of the things that got us there is verticalizing and focusing on legal. We always. We started off working with legal clients. My background, I used to work for Adobe on the account management side, and my business partner, Ryan Klein, he was working at law firms.
And so we were, you know, he, I think he worked at two or three different law firms as the director of marketing. So we started our company. You know, based off of like, we didn't think like legal was sexy or legal had the money. Like I know a lot of the companies do. We just, we had the experience already.
And I think that was about, you know, 10 years ago or so. And we got to a point where we quit our full time jobs and just started the agency and started making a little bit of money or living in our basement in Brooklyn, we're like, let's open an office. You know, we need to, we need to get out of the basement.
We're going to hire some people. So we went to look at one office in Brooklyn and we're like, we gotta move. And so we, we hightailed it to Florida where we could afford. And I think our first office was something like 500 a month. But at the time, I think we only had three or four clients. One of the, and like, one of them was a law firm and the rest were just door to door, a lot of, uh, restaurants and bars in Manhattan.
So I'd walk in, Hey, what are you guys doing on social media? What, you know, what about your menus? Like really doing anything we could. Just to get our foot in the door because, and right now our agency, for those that don't know, we focus like 95% on SEO. Like we don't do any paid, um, that's where all of our revenue comes from, that recurring revenue there in SEO.
And so, it wasn't always like that. We started off really saying yes to everybody. You know, not tracking our time, not tracking, you know, getting that scope, doing all those things. I'm sure you talked about in the podcast before that kind of puts you in a tough position and gets you working 80 hours a week and gets to a point where your employer is making more money than you are, which is tough.
And like I said, there's that I'd consider that a failure, you know, everybody's doing this for, you know, you want to make money, you want to survive. And then you also want to have a passion towards what you do. So hopefully, hopefully that gives you a little bit of a context of where we're coming from.
That's beautiful. So.
[00:03:23] Corey: You and Ryan started this, and what were you doing before you started this? You mentioned you were at Adobe. He was a director of marketing at a couple of law firms. Did you know Ryan before you started in this agency or how did you know
[00:03:35] Chase: him? Yes. I'll, I'll give you our Marvel origin story here.
I met Ryan at a freshman year of college. We went to the University of Central Florida. I think one of us was playing guitar down at the fountain. And, uh, we're like, Hey, do you want to start a band? And we started the band and we were in a pretty. Successful band touring around the country, playing venues like Warped Tour, uh, living in a van together.
Ryan actually dropped out of college to pursue touring and music. I just finished in time. And yeah, we, we kind of did that for a bit and eventually stopped playing music and was tired of living out of a, was tired of living out of a van and, you know, go eating off of the dollar menu at McDonald's. And so kind of bootstrapped.
And that was like, I think our first experience with business and figuring out, like we didn't have a label or anything. We just, you know, going to people, asking the right questions, finding the right people, creating a network. And we got to a point where like, you know, I was managing distribution deals with jukeboxes, with Pandora, with iTunes at a very young age.
And really just getting in the room with the right people. And I think a lot of that transforms. How our agency is just, you know, getting in front of the right people, going to the right conferences. And I know your podcast is all about verticalizing, finding those right people is really important, but the band, you know, we stopped in the band and then started a career.
And both of us kind of went our own separate ways. Okay. And then we finally got, we got to a point where. You know, Ryan was working at a law firm as a, as a director of digital marketing, and I was working at Adobe. And then before that, a couple of startups, we always kind of picked each other's brains.
Like, Hey, what are you doing here? And there wasn't much information about SEO at the time or digital marketing at the time. So we, you know, we shared our knowledge with one another and then got to a point where we just. We're like, Hey, we can do this ourselves. Let's, let's make that jump. Let's do it. And then we did, you know, he, he moved up from Florida to Brooklyn and we rented out, we were in a five bedroom apartment.
We rented the bottom floor and we worked out out of there seven days a week from like eight o'clock to You know, 8 p. m., you know, happy hour probably started around 3, but we worked hard.
[00:05:42] Corey: So, okay, so Ryan moves up and you guys are in Brooklyn, you guys are starting your agency and it sounds like at that time you were just being aggressive and finding clients who had a need that you can fill.
So, it sounds like you were going to restaurants, kind of the local, focusing on the local area primarily. Is that, is that fair?
[00:05:58] Chase: Yeah, yeah, for sure. That and just really using our network where it was like, Hey, you know, Hey mom, like, who do you know that owns a business? And just be like, Hey, it seems like they need a new website.
And I don't know how to build a website, but I'm going to figure it out. Um, and so that was a lot of, you know, I'm sure a lot of agency owners are listening. You figure stuff out. Yep. Or you find the right people that can, but at that early age of your business, you don't have the money to hire the right people.
And even in our stage, sometimes we don't have the money to hire the right people because Good people demand a lot of money, demand a lot of respect and time. And I
[00:06:34] Corey: would say even back then, I mean, this is about 10 years ago, right? Yeah, it was much more difficult to find good people. Like today it's easy.
You just go, you know, you can go on various different sites and there's just a lot more availability of great talent back then, which, you know, I was around as well and doing my thing. And so I know that it was. It wasn't as easy as it is today to, to find good resources to help sort of outsource. So you're, you're doing this, this work with Ryan and you guys are growing this agency, working ridiculous hours.
What led you to focus on law firms at that point?
[00:07:06] Chase: So we hired, I guess, a mutual friend, Jason Swank. He's a really good resource for your listeners that don't know who he is. We hired him to basically... Work with us one on one and figure out how, you know, we were stuck at, I think, around like 800, 000 around there and our margins weren't very good and we just were stuck and he was just basically the person to reaffirm everything we kind of already knew or was like, hey, we got to turn down these clients that come to us.
There was a lot of toxic clients, I'd say, or clients that we... One of our special, I guess, verticals that we were focused on in the past was fitness. And that was just... I had a passion for fitness. And this is the time when CrossFit was just taking off. And... I was like, Hey, there's not many in there's really not any CrossFit marketing company.
So we were like ranking number one for CrossFit marketing, getting like three or four leads a day. And these people, I mean, it was great because they pay 500 bucks and the work was easy and it was fun. And you could go, you know, I love going to their gym and working out with them. You're just meeting them.
you know, business people kind of pump you up, you know, they just get really excited. And, and when they, when their, when their business starts growing, they make you feel good. Yeah. But that was one of those things you kind of look at, we took a look at the attrition and we said like, Hey, these people basically work with us for a year, they get a hundred clients and then they don't need us anymore.
So where can we refocus? And we kind of took a look at I think we must have had, I don't know, maybe 10 or so law firms, I would say. I'm definitely guesstimating there, but it was, it was, it wasn't like a 50%. It was probably like a 30% or 20% of our business were law firms. And we took a look at everything about them, like what they pay, the type of customer they were, the type of communication.
And the biggest thing was looking at the trust. Like a lot of times clients will second guess you. So the trust is really important. Like you're hiring us as the expert and that helps a lot with the toxic clients that you can have and especially putting the pressure on your account managers when you just have people that think they know more than the agency or more than the account manager and they're used to it because they're business owners, but we, we just really liked working with law firms and you know, they're highly educated people.
They don't have time for BS. You show them metrics. You show them leads and you make them money and they want to spend more money. It was a pretty easy decision to make. The hard part was getting a lead where it was like, Hey, this is going to be a ton of money for us. And now that we have these new processes where it's like, we're focusing on law firms.
This is our scope of work. This is what we're doing in the first 30 days, the first 60 days, the first 90 days. And having somebody come along and say, Hey, I really want, you know, I want to pay you a lot of money to make this type of website. And then it's like, okay, well, that means we're gonna have to hire an outsourced developer.
And don't get me wrong, during this process, we still took on projects like that. But it was like me staying up to like midnight, working with like an overseas developer to work on this project that we shouldn't have taken. Yeah. But the more and more we said no to those things. Because you have to make payroll.
You have to pay your people. And you know, sometimes you're not making money. And I think that's, it's interesting. I'm sure a lot of other agency owners can relate to that. Like you want to take care of your people and you don't want to lose your people because the hardest thing is finding good people and training them.
Yeah. But I guess, I guess the hardest thing is just saying no to those, those big money makers, but at the same time. It frees up room to go after the right type of business, to go to conferences, to network. And we, one of the things we did too that Jason pushed us to do was starting a podcast. And as you know, Corey, you get to meet a lot of cool people.
Yeah. And here we are. And honestly, here we are. Yeah. And honestly, I don't think I've ever gotten a client directly from a podcast. Like I've never spoken with a lawyer and been like, Hey, come work with us. But there's so many times where I I'd be on a pitch and I'd say, Oh, you're having this problem. Hey, I talked with Corey about this specific thing.
Check out this podcast. And that credibility right there, it's huge versus everybody else who's just, you know, doing the proposal and saying, Hey, here's the money. Here's what we do. You know, trust us. It's just like that one thing that's going to kind of level you up in terms of. Creating credibility and establishing yourself as a thought leader in whatever industry you choose to go into.
So there's so
[00:11:17] Corey: much here to unpack. This is awesome. So can we go back just a minute to when you hired Jason? It says you mentioned you were doing about 800K in top line revenue around that. Yep. You had about 10 law firms, give or take, about 30% of your business. But at that time, you mentioned you were stuck and that your margins weren't good.
Can you kind of dig in a little bit more, kind of paint the picture of
[00:11:38] Chase: what that looked like? Yeah. One of the things that really helped us. kind of get it. I guess the way to answer your question is we kind of just shop from the hip all the time. Like, Hey, like the only thing we knew exactly is like, what was a fair price based on like, Hey, this is what we're paying our employees.
This is what we want to make. And me and Ryan have always, you know, we're not the type of people that are like, Hey, I want to make all this X amount of money and bring it home. Like our goal was always, Hey, let's deliver a really great product. And as you know, the second you don't deliver a great product, people start talking.
I don't want to get an e next to this, but you know, people start talking bad about, uh, yeah, I don't want to get the explicit parental advisory on our podcast. You know, your name means a lot. And so our focus is always creating a really good product. And so to really answer your question, it really came down to getting control over our processes.
And the one thing that I was so against, which really transformed our business, was tracking time. So every single person still at this agency, we use a program called Harvest and just tracking time and billable hours and really figuring out, Hey, you know, how much are we charging per hour for this specific thing?
Whether it's writing content, building a website, actually doing the nitty gritty of SEO. And then is our client getting what they're paying for in terms of time? Really making sure to be proactive. Versus reactive in the type of work we're doing. Cause it's way, it's so easy to get a client and they're ranking well.
And you say, Hey, we don't have to do a lot of work for them. They're, they're ranking well already versus the client. It's breathing down your neck. You're getting a phone call every day, them threatening to cancel all of a sudden, like, you know, and it's not fair to your other client because. You're spending this amount of work time here, and you only have X amount of time based on what you are able to produce.
And so to really answer your question on what we did to, and we're still working on this with the margins is one tracking time, sticking to the process and then. We're going to the things that we really don't know how to do, and then increasing our prices. So that's one thing that's really important. And we've done this a couple of times throughout our lifetime is increasing a price, and that's probably one of the scariest things to do too, is increasing pricing, because.
You think like, all right, this person's been paying this for so long, but at the end of the day, somebody might leave you. But if you really look at, let's say like 10% of your clients leave, but if you can increase your bottom line revenue by like 20%, 30%, and there's a good explanation for it too, if people have pushback, be like, Hey, we're, we're investing more into it.
Create getting better rankings for you or investing more under people. Obviously now you can use the inflation where people kind of assume the inflation, but yeah, yeah, we, we raised their prices before that. So we didn't have that. Okay. Um,
[00:14:21] Corey: yeah. How did, how did that conversation go? Like, what was the context?
Like, uh, like, was there a significant percentage increase, let's say in pricing and how did you, yeah, we
[00:14:31] Chase: kind of took a look at, yeah, we kind of took a look at what was fair for our clients. And if, you know, if. How competitive in the amount of time we're spending, like, hey, how many hours do we need to spend a month on this client, and Um, And there were plenty of clients we, when we finally got down to it, like we were losing money, we were working every single month.
And even though they're paying 5, 000 a month, like the amount of time, like that we're putting in, we're losing money by taking them as a client. So just taking a look at and having that data and, and being able to make the right type of decisions based on data. But as far as that conversation with the client, it was really just like, Hey, you know, we've been working with you for X amount of time.
We've had great results and we want to continue to have those results and we want to make the results even better. And that means investing more in our people and investing more in our processes and. Working with a third party vendors and, and really, this is like years ago, but it didn't even affect us that price.
It didn't affect us in a negative way, it was a positive. But it's hard and scary to, to put pressure on a client. And one thing that we never ever do, and this is like a side, like little nugget, I guess you'd say, is like, we never use, like, price as an excuse where it's like, Oh, we're not doing well for you.
But if you spend an extra 2, 000 a month. That's what we need. It's like, we already took a look at what you needed. We took a look at the competition and like, we like that's on us as an agency. We should have quoted you higher, but we never use that as an excuse to, to increase the effectiveness of campaign or make more money.
Cause it's not right. You're not doing right by the client. Cause you told them that you promised them a certain thing and you should have done your research beforehand. So if we have to eat it for a bit. We do. Yeah, it's a
[00:16:09] Corey: value based conversation, I think. Just kind of feeding this back a little bit, your ability to go back to your clients confidently and say, Hey, we need to raise prices is based on the fact that you started tracking billable hours and you were able to say, okay, what are we actually spending from a cost perspective relative to what we're making?
And there's some clients that are more work than others. And it was an opportunity for you to load balance that, but you wouldn't be able to do that. If you didn't have the bill of hours, it sounds like you're, you're a big fan of doing that.
[00:16:37] Chase: Yeah. I mean, and it's just internal, like we don't share that, that with the client, but yeah, I mean, the amount of decisions internally that it helps with hiring too.
Cause you might say like, Oh, we're, we're maxed out on SEO. We're maxed out on account management. We're maxed out on content writers. And we, we know we have a process now where we know like when capacity is at X percent for a certain department, we need to hire, or when it's at we're under capacity, like we don't.
Ever fire people based off of our capacity. So it's like, Hey, we, we, there are salespeople and say, Hey, how can we upsell right now? So we have like an extra content writer that has capacity, or we might do extra projects internally. But that way we at least know like which team needs help. And one of the things I think that when we implemented time tracking, my concern with, and I pushed back so hard against it.
I was telling Jason, I was like, I'm not doing this to my people. I hate tracking time. It's micromanaging. We never use it as like a tool to look at our Employees and say like, Oh, they only work 30 hours this week, like on an individual level. Cause it's easy to do that.
[00:17:36] Corey: How do you frame that to your employees?
And it sounds like this was a while ago, but if you can recall, like, how did you sell that for lack of better term to your employees, the people who are doing this, this work and spending this time in a way that they felt like it was. Uh, a good thing for them. So it's like,
[00:17:51] Chase: Hey, do you guys feel like you're being overworked?
Yes. So I have a great solution for you. Yeah. We're going to start tracking time. So as soon as you're at capacity, we're going to hire more people. You're going to hire me, help. You're going to hire more people. Let's do it. Yeah. Okay. And that was it. And it was also promising them what I told you before.
It's like, we're not looking at this as like a way to micromanage you. We're looking at it as a way to forecast for a company. Yeah.
[00:18:13] Corey: Going back to those early days when you started focusing on law firms, how did you build momentum in the law firm market? And again, the context is you had a bunch of different clients, you were working with a consultant who came in, helped you to realize that, you know, you could do more with less, meaning just focus on attorneys based on the trust that you had built with them.
At that point, How did you go out and get more attorney
[00:18:36] Chase: clients? Really? It was, it was taking a look at conferences that made sense for us. The podcast was key to kind of expanding our network. And then one thing we do really well is thought leaderships. We do a lot of blogging and blogging specifically to lawyers.
So we don't do any cold outreach at all. Okay. We've hired third parties
to So, I mean, I'd love to. If any agency is listening right now and has a good resource or something or somebody that they work with, that's a hunter would love that connection, but we've tried it and we just got to a point where we really started writing content that was specifically tailored towards lawyers.
And that really helped. So when, you know, somebody's Google's a long tail keyword, we start showing up. So like, how do I get my. A perfect example would be like, Hey, my law firms, Google, my business got taken off or Google business profile. Now they call it, I guess, but it got taken off. Like I like, what do I do?
So it's like writing article. Hey, your law firm did this versus, Hey, your business did this, right? So there's all these people writing about businesses. So we're talking now about law firms specifically. And so I think like 90% of the content on our website is tailored towards lawyers. Yeah. And what that does is it, it just, it just helps them.
Like when people are looking for, they have a problem, they say, Hey, these guys are pretty credible. They talk a lot about this all the time and the content they have. It's it's, and we're putting out a lot of content just around problems and solving those problems and those questions that people are asking.
And we, you know, back in the day, we're like, man, everybody's going to be using voice search. Like that's how they're going to search. So we were, and that was, I mean, maybe people do, I don't, but we were like really focused on answering the questions. So it's like, you know, how do I. Make sure my legal marketing firm is doing what they're saying they're doing.
I mean, a lot of people are like, you know, this is our secret sauce. We can't tell you. And one thing we do, we say, Hey, this is all everything we're doing. Yeah. And we tell the clients and like, Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. I don't want to know this. And so we kind of, and we kind of explain it through blogs. So we'll have like our scope of work that we present every month.
And we're saying like, Alright, this really advanced like SEO tactics, like you don't, you probably don't even care what this is, but if you care, here, check out this blog. Sure. And it links, it links directly in our project management to that. So if they want to look at it, or we have internal videos that we refer to, but to answer your question, Corey, it's like a very content driven, so just establishing ourselves as experts specifically in that industry.
And then also going to conferences and just having a presence there. Can you say more about that? Once again, what, what
[00:21:08] Corey: conferences, whether specifically or in general, like how did you choose which conferences to go to? And then how did, how do you, how did you, and are you using conferences to, to get new business?
[00:21:18] Chase: I think the first concert, concert, I would love to go to a concert for, for legal marketing. The first, the first, the first conference we went to was. Learnomics, which is a conference that Avo used to put on and we sponsored it like one year. And I'm like, well, I'm like, we're so out of our depth.
There's so many legal marketing companies here. And we're just like, oh, these little guys. And, um, I'm okay with being a little guy too. It's fine. You know, like, I don't think we're, we're not. We're not at this point, maybe one day we're not going to be a Scorpion. We want to be like a boutique firm and really just, we saw like what was there and it kind of opened our eyes to like, Oh man, there's like a lot of like business deals going down here.
The only conference we go to now is MCMP. And what's interesting is like, we don't even focus on torts. We just know like, really good PI attorneys are there and the ones that really know what they're doing. And like, we're friends with all the vendors, so it's kind of fun to go to Vegas. Go to
[00:22:11] Corey: Vegas. Yeah, conference for conference, MCMB's MATS torts made perfect.
It's a conference for personal injury attorneys who focus on what they call torts, which is class
[00:22:20] Chase: action lawsuit type. Yes. So it's not even, and most of the people there, which is, we kind of found a niche there because most people there are selling mass sort services. So a lot of paid, so not many just traditional marketing companies are there.
So we kind of found like a special backdoor in where we're not like up against 30 marketing companies sitting there. And one thing we did there was, we also, we had a booth for Our company. But then at the same time, we have a booth of the podcast. So we actually have a, had a live podcast going on M T M P, where literally anybody going by, they're like, what are you doing?
What is it? Someone say, oh, it's our, we're a marketing company. We have this legal podcast. And they say, oh, okay. And then it's just getting people familiar with the name Market My Market and then one of the things we also did, 'cause one of our salespeople really loves golf. And so we do a, a golf tournament before every single M T M P Great.
Where we have, we work with sponsors. And it's kind of like, cause if you're flying into Vegas and usually getting there a day before, so what are you doing that day? And so it's like, Hey, we're going to throw a golf tournament. And what we did was get, we have, we had about seven or eight sponsors and now we've actually partnered with MTNP on it.
So they actually partnered with us and, and they're sending, at first it was us just reaching out to people that we knew were going to be at the conference and client can saying, Hey, come play golf with us. We're going to have like a whole one competition where you can win a million bucks, you know, and you get that insured.
And it's a lot of work to do that as well, but. Like I said, our salesperson really loved golf. So he was all about it, but that was another way to really kind of piggyback and set ourselves. Up to be recognized around people who are at the conference. So that's one thing we did. Another creative thing we did was we had our video crew come up into the suite.
I think, I think it was at the Bellagio or something. But, um, we'd say like, Hey, do you want to go up to the suite and shoot a, uh, a 30 second commercial? And they're like, what? And I'm like, yeah, it's free. I'm like, we're just trying to, you know, meet some cool lawyers. And so we literally had like bookings and we'd like any prospect we wanted, we'd be like, Hey, Hey, we're going to get to have an hour with you alone to talk about your business.
And then one, it would help us. upsell of the client on marketing services or do a full production video shoot for them. So those are just ways that we kind of found a way to, to best utilize conferences because. You have to do something special. You have to do something different. Yeah. We've done little things on the side where we literally did an audit for every single season.
I'm going to share all my, my tidbits here because they're fun. And even if our competitor is trying to do it, it's a lot of work. So yeah, they probably won't, they won't, it's fine. But one of the, one of the coolest things that I'm really proud of that we did was, and I think a lot of people go to conferences and they get a fancy booth and they think, Hey, the business is going to come to me.
It's not. Like they're going to see that you're a marketing company. Every single person is going to walk by you and be like, Ooh, I don't want to talk to them. I'm tired of getting pitched. And so it's, it's good to keep in the back of your mind. Like, how can I stand out? And so one thing we did is we, we got the attendee list like two weeks before MTMP, and I think there was like 800 or so people attending that we wanted to go after it and we did an audit for every single one of them in two weeks.
And so what we did was someone walked by and they say, Hey, Corey from Quinn law firm, one second, I have something for you. And they go, what, what are you, what are you talking about? We had a fire folder with it printed out and it said, Oh, we made it. We made this for your firm. And they go, what? And I said, yeah, yeah, we did.
And that right there, just like people's minds were blown by like, Whoa, like it was a lot of work and it's something that. You got to put the work in. So it's like, if you're going to do the conference thing, you just got to be creative about it because otherwise you're going to sit there and you're going to feel really stupid when you're just standing there and trying to be like, Hey, come over here.
Come, come. Or like, Hey, you want to win a free iPad? Like, come on. Like, so you just got to get creative.
[00:25:58] Corey: So I love all that. There's a great book that I read a couple of years ago. It's called The Experience Economy. And it's all about this idea, or at least one of the big takeaways I got from the book was that.
The way to build trust with prospects is to create a shared experience that, that creates a memory, right? And so I think about that, I think about the golf tournament, you know, bringing a bunch of prospects together and having a shared experience. And then maybe someone, you know, hits the hole in one, wins the million bucks.
Like that's a memory that regardless of, you know, whether or not they hire you, you will always be attached to that experience. Like that was a Market My Market golf experience,
[00:26:34] Chase: right? For sure. And if, by the way, just a side note, if say actually hit that hole in one, you know, we didn't pay it out, there's companies that are insurance companies that will come and insure that for you.
Amazing. So if you ever want to throw. If you ever want to do a golf tournament, it's a, it's a fun little thing. All
[00:26:50] Corey: right. That's very cool. Love that tidbit. Thank you for that. Hey, it's Corey. Almost every day I talk with agency owners who are frustrated with getting their outbound program off the ground.
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[00:27:49] Chase: outbound
[00:27:50] Corey: roi.com. Now, back to the show. Many agencies, especially younger agencies, really struggle with depending on the founder for driving sales. Yeah. Typically, in the early days, it sounds like you and Ryan were really, really doing a lot of that.
How did that evolve for you? Are you still sort of the primary salesperson at the agency, or how did that change
[00:28:10] Chase: over time? No, we're both me and Ryan. It's, it's like if, if there's a sale that needs a founder on it to uh, to close it, we'll, we'll jump on. Yeah. But Ryan's much more active in that now, but we don't pitch anything anymore.
We have salespeople that do that. It's just training, you know, finding the right people and training them on how. You know, not to be a salesman, right? Uh, because the easiest thing to say is like, one of these can do is talk smack about somebody else. We never talk smack. Yeah. Because like people have their own processes and own way of doing things and you don't know what their goals are and what they're doing.
They might. And like the easiest thing to say is like, Oh, like I want to show up for personal injury lawyer in this city. And it's like, Hey, like a lot of times we'll say like, that's so competitive. You've only been around for two years. Like we're not even going to work with you because. It's going to take you a long time.
And like, it just doesn't, I mean, you know, Corey, this doesn't make sense. So it's better to say, you know, what, what, what kind of cases do you like? And they're like, Oh, you know what? Actually like car accident cases a lot. And that's like my bread and butter. So I'm like, Oh, you know what? We could do car accident lawyer.
And that's like way less competitive. And we can focus a campaign just around that. Yeah. And so it's training, it's training to be like really, and I think people really appreciate that because it's easier to say, this is what you want. Oh, we can do that for you for sure. You want to be top three? Okay, for sure.
And it's like, that's going to lead to someone signing up and being extremely disappointed right off the bat. And our attrition is like, awesome. We have clients for years and, uh, and that comes down to being transparent. And that's like our core, one of our core values of the company is just being transparent with, with our clients and ourselves.
[00:29:45] Corey: When did you, at what point did you hire your first salesperson for the
[00:29:48] Chase: agency? Oh man, I tried so many times. It's like one of those things where you kind of get burned out and you're like, man, I wish I could have a. Even like a hunter, I'm trying to think. I'm like trying to go back to the office it was and I think, I think it must have been, it was a while.
I think we were around that like sub million mark. And it was just fine. And first, I mean, first we were just trying to find somebody that was hungry. Like, I was like, I want to, I want like a, a boiler room, dude. I want a guy that's just so savage. And that, that kind of just doesn't, you know, it's fine. I'm like thinking now in my head, I'm like, Oh my gosh.
I'm like, they're actually, we actually had this one guy and it's a funny story. And, uh, he, he, he had a normal job, but he's like, you know what, I'm going to come. And in your basement in Brooklyn, I'm going to sell for you. And I'm going to come at 5 PM and I'm going to target the West coast. And this guy was just so bad.
He hadn't, he didn't know anything about, about marketing. He just knew, he just knew he wanted to make money. And it's like, he would say anything. We really got our first, really some momentum. And we found somebody that was like, that really knew our business already. And we could kind of mold how he pitched into who we were as a company.
And that's just like kind of we found on, we, we have the three salespeople and a sales assistant. I think that if you hire someone out of desperation, you're always going to be stressed out. And, and if I think you have to look at why you're hiring a salesperson, is it's a step away from sales and there it's, it's kind of a catch 22 there because if you're branding yourself as the agency owner, people want to talk to you.
And if you're the guy that's in the blogs, people want to talk to you. So that's kind of a, uh, a difficult transition, but for us, it's like our salespeople make a lot of money and it's like making sure that they're happy and I won't get too far into it. If the client's paying us. We're paying that salesperson in perpetuity as long as that client's paying.
So I don't know how other agencies are set up, but it makes them feel like they have a piece of the business. There's alignment there. And yeah. And, and at the end of the day, they could be very, they could be making a lot of money if they have a good book of business. And then why would a salesperson ever want to leave your company if they have this huge book of business?
So I can say is like, we tried a couple of sales people over the years, and it was just like, We're trying to hire a two junior year person. And the commission just wasn't in line with what, you know, what we're paying now to where I know our salespeople are just really great salespeople and they're not going anywhere because we treat them right.
[00:32:20] Corey: advice would you have for an agency founder who is looking to bring in their first salesperson?
[00:32:26] Chase: Yeah, I guess I would say it depends where you are on the journey. And it depends on how, how hands on you want to be like, I took the approach of trying to get, you know, young guys in there that were really hungry.
And maybe like, I just wasn't a good trainer when it came down to that. Like I, I've always been ruthless. Like I was, when I was in the band with Ryan, we were both like selling CDs out of our van. We were making like a couple hundred bucks a day, just going up to people and shopping malls. And then after that, I sold timeshare.
So I'm like pretty like. You know, you have to know how to read somebody and there's some things in sales that, you know, you can teach and you can't teach. It's figuring out the commission structure that makes sense. That's going to be fair. It's going to keep them around. And then if you, if you have the time, you know, maybe you might get lucky and train somebody.
But we found our best salespeople from people that are ingrained in the industry, or at least have been ingrained for many years in the industry, just because you know how to deal with people and you know how to overcome objections. And the people that don't know these things, they ask you a million questions and they feel like they're going to mess up.
And I, but then at the same time, you want somebody that's going to ask a million questions and not somebody that's going to promise all these things. And they start up and they're like, well, Corey said this and he promised this. And then you're like, you've already started off in a really bad relationship with the client.
[00:33:38] Corey: Yeah. Let's transition over to the podcast. You mentioned there's three primary drivers for business, which were conferences, podcasts, and thought leadership. The Legal Mastermind podcast, you're 226 episodes in. Which is fantastic. So when did that start? When did you start doing the podcast
[00:33:54] Chase: about? We can do the math, but we've had, we've had an episode every Monday.
Okay. So divide by 52, something. Yeah. Yeah. So I'm not a great mathematician, but, um, it's been a, it's been, yeah, it's been, it's been a while and it's, it's once you get the process down, it's way easier than you think. It kind of sounds crazy. Whoa. You do a podcast every Monday. It's like, no, actually we batch our podcasts.
And we record like three or four in a week and that covers a month. And then sometimes like, it'll just be a conversation with. Me and my business partner about what, what's going on in the industry right now, digital marketing, but like 95% of them are people that I want to talk to. So I'll read a book or read a blog and we have a podcast producer.
So I think the first step is finding someone like that. And there's no, there's like companies that do it for you. I think I found somebody on, on Upwork, but literally it's, it's like a hundred percent hands off, I basically show up. And, you know, have my notes and do my research beforehand, both me and Ryan and Eric Grosano as well, who's one of our salespeople.
We basically just have a really good system. Like anything in your agency, it's like making sure you have all the processes down. So it's like, I know my podcast producer is going to get the final, break it down, send it to our social media team. Confirm with the guests like multiple times, make sure they're set up, kind of prep me with a one sheet about anything that specifically was done on like a pre interview and then kind of just show up and it's always something on my calendar, like I know I'm going to do a podcast here and then it gets to be a thing you look forward to, I think, because it's, it's, especially when you have a guest that you're like, man, I read this person's book.
This is, this is great. Like I remember. Like, I don't know if you've ever read Built to Sell by John Warlow. Yes. But he, he's some, a book I read and I was like, man, I wish I could talk to that guy. We asked him to be on the podcast and then he said yes, and I was like, this is amazing. So it's like catching, I think it's catching people too when they're doing like a promotional round.
Sure. Like I reached out to, I reached out to Matthew McConaughey, but he didn't want to get a leak on my podcast. Well, let me,
[00:35:54] Corey: let me ask, who is, who is the target listener? Like who you have in mind when you're creating this
[00:35:59] Chase: content? Any legal marketer or owner or anybody who works at a law firm, because it's not just marketing.
And that's one of the reasons we, we started the podcast too. So somebody would be like, Hey, like a client would be like, Hey, do you have a really great resource for intake? And for those that don't know, intakes basically, you know, somebody that's going to answer the phone for you at like eight o'clock at night when somebody calls and says like, Oh, I just got in a car accident.
Or it's basically an outsourced call center, but it's not a call center. It's like somebody that really knows your business essentially. And I didn't know anybody. And there was a, and we got to a point where it's like, Hey, I can create a really great network of people by just reaching out to a bunch of CEOs and owners of companies.
and learn about what they do. And then also, if anybody ever asked me, I'm like, I know a guy. I know two guys. I know five guys. Check this out. And it's, so it's really great to, if you, if you're really going to verticalize using the podcast for that. And we've never used it to solicit business. Just because like, I'm not that type of person.
I'm unfortunately not the guy that's going to be at the Fifth grade dance and ask the girl to dance with me. I'm just not, it's just my, it's just my personality now. Like I'd, I'd have a panic attack before that would happen, but, but it's, it's nice to be ingrained in the community. And that way people reach out on LinkedIn too and say, Hey, I am a client, a potential client for you.
So it's building up that presence in the community. And then the cool part too, is you go to the conferences and you have somebody walk up to you within the podcast. You're like, Oh man, great to see you. And all of a sudden, like. You have this network and it's awesome. And it's really, it's not a lot of work.
And I know Corey, you're using Riverside. We use Zoom. So there's, there's so many. Easy platforms and then to get, actually get the podcast up, it's like you, you click a button and you upload it like a Facebook photo and it's, it's up and online on iTunes. It's crazy. It's super,
[00:37:44] Corey: super straightforward. I would agree with that for sure.
Quick question about hiring. Does it, is it important for you based on your experience with the sort of the working with attorneys and this focus on law firms? Do you hire people with a legal background for your agency?
[00:38:00] Chase: No, I mean, I don't think I'm trying to think besides sales. I don't think we ever have.
Um, we got to, we were touring around with the idea of like hiring content writers that maybe passed the bar and like, couldn't, you know, or couldn't pass the bar, but went to law school. We just never did. We really look for like bright people who fit into our culture. And we kind of know that, and we're, we're a fairly remote team, except we do have a small team that Our SEO team works out of an office in North Carolina.
We used to have offices in Orlando and Fort Lauderdale. But to answer your question, it's, we, we really, we really don't focus on that on for us personally, because we found good enough people outside of that. But I don't necessarily think that in all industries, that would make sense. So if you were like, I would say like, let's say you're the marketing company for roofers.
I think having a person that used to work as a roofer would be amazing. I, I just don't think I'm ever going to hire a lawyer to, to work for us just because of, you know, but I think, I think there's, so taking what I say with a grain of salt and I think taking everything I said today with a grain of salt is a good idea.
[00:39:01] Corey: When it comes to verticalization with a, let's say a generalist agency owner, maybe it's you and Ryan back in the day, hustling, you know, selling websites and other things to any business that will work with you. And they're thinking, maybe they're thinking about verticalizing. They know, they understand sort of the general, you know, how it works.
But, you know, what would you say are the positive aspects? Haven't been through what you've been through. What are the positive aspects to verticalizing your agency?
[00:39:26] Chase: Efficiency. Just with anything. It's kind of like when you got a bunch of stuff to do in the day and you don't have a to do list and you're like, you kind of, you're kind of paralyzed, right?
You're like, what? There's too much stuff to do. It's kind of like that when you don't have a vertical you're going after, you're just like, there's so many people to go after, like, I just went to this coffee shop, man, their, their menus, garbage, I should, I should, you know, talk to the owner. And it's like those ideas kind of like, actually, I'm gonna go to the coffee shop and I'm going to put together my top 10 prospects in the legal community, like the top 10 law firms that I want to go after.
How am I going to get those people as clients? That's where I want to spend my time at the coffee shop, not thinking about. You know, how can I help? Oh, I'm sitting in the coffee shop. Ooh, there's a martial arts place across the way. They might need marketing. It's really, I think, helpful to eliminate stress too.
Going back to like, I'm not the person to do this, but Steve Jobs wore the same thing every day. Yeah. And I know a lot of entrepreneurs do that as well, but. I like my surf t shirts, you know, but I
[00:40:19] Corey: wear black for every podcast. It's the same thing. I don't have to think about it. It's just what I do. So it's just less, less tax on the brain, right?
Less switching costs. Yep.
[00:40:28] Chase: For sure. For sure.
[00:40:30] Corey: Are there any negatives to taking a vertical
[00:40:32] Chase: approach? I really think it comes down to the money and the, I mean, it was, it was hard for me big time. They're like the opportunity costs that, where it's like, man, I, wow. What I know, I know I chose. this specific vertical, but what if I suck with fitness?
And then I pivoted into products. I could be working for like a, a, a rogue fitness or like a Theragun now. And it's like, Oh, that'd be so fun and cool. So it's like the FOMO type thing. I think you do have to make a decision and stick with it. And then the cool thing is like, like Scorpion, look at Scorpion.
They've got the legal vertical. They figured it, you know, you figure out a vertical. And then you can say, you know what, like for us specifically, we kind of, we focus on legal, but we, we're now kind of branching out to different verticals because we have this process for legal done. Like I'm not going to go out and start a podcast for like dentists.
But if we had the capacity, maybe somebody on my team wants to do that. Maybe someone on my team wants to be the expert in dental surgery. And we already have the processes set up for all of our marketing, all of our podcasts, and basically just plug and play now. And that, that's where the work goes in is building out those processes.
[00:41:39] Corey: question for you.
[00:41:41] Chase: What's your motivation? When I was younger, I just, I just never felt like I was in control, whether it's in control of finances or control of my day. And I think that my motivation is just, and I'm never going to have total control of what's going on in my business because there's always fires to put out.
But just knowing I have control over saying yes or no, whether it's like, Hey, I can't take this meeting because I got to pick my kids up. Or I don't want this client because I can just tell him, especially you're toxic and you're, you're a jerk. I don't want to work with you. Yeah. So that's type of control that motivates me.
And I'm, you know, money, money is always a motivation because when you have money, you can make decisions that aren't based off of money. Like, uh, one thing my mom always told me, she said, money doesn't buy happiness, but it helps.
[00:42:28] Corey: That's beautiful. Well, thank you for this. This has been a fantastic walkthrough of a great success story of an agency owner, co founder, started off as a journalist and has built this amazing, successful agency, focusing on law firms, now starting to potentially go into other verticals, which is exciting.
How can people reach you if they want to kind of follow up or get in touch with you?
[00:42:53] Chase: Sure. My email address is [email protected]. Feel free to add me on LinkedIn as well. If you have any questions about.
You know, we get, we get leads that we can't, you know, use. And if anybody has a legal leads that they don't want to work with law firms, you know, send them our way and we'll, we'll do the same. And then if you use Twitter or X now, I guess, um, I'm just C H A S E W I L L at Twitter. Perfect.
[00:43:24] Corey: Thank you so much for joining Chase.
All right, folks, that's it for today. I'm Corey Quinn, and I hope you join me again next time for the Vertical Go-To Market Podcast. If you receive value from the show, I would love a 5 star rating and review on Apple Podcasts. Thanks, and we'll see you soon.