Nikita Vakhrushev is the Founder, CEO, and CMO of ASPEKT, an agency that helps e-commerce brands increase their monthly revenue by 30% with performance-driven email and SMS marketing. He has helped brands achieve their e-commerce goals through Facebook ads, email marketing, website design, branding, and influencer marketing. Before ASPEKT, Nikita was the Founder and CEO of RPMmedia.com, where he helped businesses in all industries increase their profit through digital marketing strategies like social media, SEO, and Google Ads.
Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:
- [03:18] What is ASPEKT, and what does it do?
- [04:46] Nikita Vakhrushev shares his background in direct response marketing
- [08:00] Nikita’s journey of starting and running his first e-commerce brand
- [12:39] Starting and growing an agency through Upwork
- [19:10] ASPEKT’s ideal client profile and customer success stories
- [23:51] Email marketing tips to help you grow
- [31:59] SMS marketing tips and apps to help you succeed
- [34:57] The evolution of ASPEKT’s services and niching
- [39:20] ASPEKT’s hiring and training process and clients’ onboarding process
In this episode…
Are you an e-commerce brand struggling with your SMS and email marketing? Where can you get the external resources and support you need to help you achieve your goals?
Acquiring new customers and retaining the existing customer base are the top priorities of e-commerce brands. According to Nikita Vakhrushev, brands can achieve it through email and SMS marketing. The only problem is that most marketing teams are too busy to do it or lack the expertise. Nikita recommends hiring an email marketing agency to help you generate the expected business results as he shares his journey of growing an agency focused on email and SMS marketing.
Listen to this episode of the Inspired Insider Podcast with Dr. Jeremy Weisz featuring Nikita Vakhrushev, Founder, CEO, and CMO of ASPEKT. Nikita talks about what ASPEKT does and his journey of growing it through Upwork, email marketing tips and tech to help you scale, and SMS marketing tips and apps you should use for marketing your brand.
Resources mentioned in this episode:
- Sam Ovens
- Alex Becker
- Eugene M. Schwartz
- Ben Settle
- Kevin Rogers on LinkedIn
- Octane AI
- “[Top Agency Series] From Struggling Waiter to Affluent Business Owner With Anatoliy Labinskiy” on Inspired Insider
- “[Agency Series] How to Make Your Website Awesome and Avoid the Report of Broken Dreams With Andy Crestodina, Co-Founder of Orbit Media Studios” on Inspired Insider
Sponsor for this episode
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Rise25 Cofounders, Dr. Jeremy Weisz and John Corcoran, have been podcasting and advising about podcasting since 2008.
Insider Stories from Top Leaders & Entrepreneurs…
You are listening to Inspired Insider with your host, Dr. Jeremy Weisz.
Jeremy Weisz 0:22
Dr. Jeremy Weisz here founder of inspiredinsider.com where I talk with inspirational entrepreneurs and leaders today is no different. I’ve Nikita Vakhrushev of ASPEKT agency and Nikita before I formally introduce you, I always like to point out other episodes, people should check out of the podcast and a big shout out to Anatoliy Labinskiy of Golden Stream Media who actually introduced us and check out the episode I do with him. Again, they’re both in the e-commerce world. So you’ll learn a lot from the agency side and also the e-commerce side. Also, I’d Andy Crestodina, who started Orbit Media Studios. And this is kind of irrelevant, because Nikita, were to talk about niche services. And really Nikita is niche down to really email and SMS and, and Andy really, they specialize in really high performing websites. And so it’s interesting to hear how people niche not only in industry, but in services, and he’s also a fellow Chicago and like Nikita is from here as well. And so this episode is brought to you by Rise25. And at Rise25 we help businesses give to and connect to their dream 100 relationships and partnerships. And how do we do that, we actually help you run your podcast, we are an easy button for a company to launch and run their podcast, we do accountability strategy, and the full production execution of a podcast. And Nikita, for me, the number one thing in my life is relationships, I’m always looking at ways to give to my best relationships. And I found no better way to do that than the profile, the people and companies I most admire and share what they’re working on over the past decade. So if you’ve thought about podcasting, you should if you have questions go to rise25.com to learn more. And without further ado, Nikita Vakhrushev as I was saying is founder of ASPEKT Marketing. And that’s ASPEKT with a K ASPEKT Marketing. And he started his agency back in 2017. He actually started his own e-commerce brand first. And then he decided, well, I’m gonna start an agency as well. And he found his place in e-commerce advertising services to serve, probably scratch his own itch there. And he found great success. And he went through an evolution we’ll talk about the evolution of the different services he provided, but then he just double down on email and SMS marketing, which was, that’s what he specializes in now. And after helping over 100, direct to consumer brands, he has a very unique perspective when it comes to most out there and the brand’s retention channels. So Nikita, thanks for joining me.
Nikita Vakhrushev 3:04
Jeremy, it’s a pleasure to be on the podcast. Personally, it’s great to also meet a fellow Chicago and as well.
Jeremy Weisz 3:12
Talk about ASPEKT Marketing and ASPEKT Agency right now what you do.
Nikita Vakhrushev 3:18
Yeah, for sure. ASPEKT mainly focuses on helping brands, okay, I guess the elevator pitch here would be, we help add an extra 200 to 400k a year to e-commerce businesses bottom line. The main reason why we have that number, because we’ve done it before, there’s tons of case studies where we’ve added an extra 200 grand to someone’s bottom line because of our services. And typically, that’s on average, like 30% of the revenue that comes in, from the businesses that we work with 30% of the revenue comes in from email and SMS.
Jeremy Weisz 3:58
If you’re just listening to the audio, I’m showing there’s a video piece here and we’re showing ASPEKT Agencies website. It looks beautiful, actually Nikita and also, I don’t know I’m curious, we’re if you learn direct response marketing from anyone because you’re very good at, that’s a very benefit driven headline doesn’t say what you do. It’s like, it is a result that a company wants to get right. You don’t even say email or SMS you like, do you want to add $200,000 to your bottom line? So I think it’s kind of like a masterclass of how do you approach companies, right? And did you learn direct response or marketing from anyone in particular, whether it’s personally or resources?
Nikita Vakhrushev 4:46
Honestly, it’s a mixture of all the different marketing courses that I’ve taken over the years, like you mentioned in the intro, I’ve been in the game for about six years now and I’ve taken I don’t know maybe like 50 different core verses throughout that time, and all of them have little gold nuggets that I pick away from that talk about copywriting or sales messages. And I figured it makes sense to have something that’s really punchy and really easy to stand out from the crowd, because no one, if you talk to a marketer, it’s like, Hey, how can you help me? They can’t tell you like, okay, well, it all depends. Usually, that’s the answer that you get, it’s never like, oh, we’ll add, you know, an extra 30% of revenue to your bottom line by doing these things. So and that’s the benefit of being in a niche service, because you can more accurately predict the results that you can generate for your clients.
Jeremy Weisz 5:38
So talk about who are some of those people that you studied?
Nikita Vakhrushev 5:43
Yeah. So it’s a mixture of So Sam Ovens is a big influence for me. Same thing with Alex Becker. They’re more so new eight, like they have their own courses. They have their own YouTube channels. So I’ve learned a lot from those courses specifically. But you got to also go to the classics like Eugene Schwartz. And David Ogilvy, like I remember, I think 2017 or 2018, like staying up all night, like reading through different David Ogilvy ads. I remember like the Rolls Royce one is probably the biggest one that I’m sure you know what I’m talking about that Rolls Royce ad that everyone refers to, but that one’s my favorite by far.
Jeremy Weisz 6:19
Well, what was the headline? The Rolls Royce when it was something like, you can’t hear the engine or you can’t hear that? I’m forgetting what the there was some like famous like tagline.
Nikita Vakhrushev 6:30
It was like, at 60 miles an hour the only thing you’ll hear in your Rolls Royce is the clock ticking.
Jeremy Weisz 6:35
Exactly. Exactly. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. I love it. Any ones today copywriters, directors, those markers that you follow?
Nikita Vakhrushev 6:47
At this point, I can’t really think of anyone that comes to mind but I love the peers that I work with, for example, like Nick Shackleford is a great person that I talk to on a weekly basis and we chit chat about all the different things going on within the marketing space. Same thing with Eddie Maloof, who runs for media and plus all the people that I follow on Twitter, like think Charles Miller is a good one. And think JK Molina is also a good one. At this point, there’s so much information in the world that it’s just hard for me to track down where I get some of the info.
Jeremy Weisz 7:22
Yeah, no, I love it. Because I am a constant student and learner. So I always like to find resources. And some of the people like, Ben Settle on if you follow his stuff, but Ben Settle is talks a lot about email all about email, and he’s got a different personality than most. So it’s kind of entertaining. And I felt like Kevin Rogers throughout the year as to who’s got copy chief, but yeah, I love it. And now, we talked about your start and your start came with your own e-commerce brand. So take me back to that time and what you were doing at that time.
Nikita Vakhrushev 8:00
Man, that time was so Rocky in my life personally, because I okay, just to give you a full on history, so in high school, I used to be a part of the print media club. And there, you can make your own T-shirts with screen printing or vinyl heat press. And there, I learned a lot about design, and basically how to use Photoshop, Illustrator, all the common tools that you see today for digital design and photo manipulation. Fast forward to college, it’s my first I wish I would have done that in high school. Yeah, it was one of those things where like, I wanted to make a custom t shirt. And I’m like, how do I do that. And it turns out, there was a club, so I just joined it. And it turns out, it was a class and it was a lot of fun. Shout out to Miss Smith if she’s listening. But then fast forward to first year of college, you’re familiar with this College of Lake County up in gurney. That was instead of going to the state school route, I went to college Lake County just to get my general education in. And I think it was in like anthropology class or something like that. I was going through Reddit not paying attention at all. And there was a thread that was like, hey, make money online by printing T-shirts without doing any of the fulfillment. And I’m like, Well, I got to look into this. So I looked into it further and it was pretty straightforward. Now you can just see it as print on demand T-shirts or print on demand hoodies basically drop shipping book for clothing and custom apparel items. So basically, the next week after that, I started my first Shopify store connected with Amazon. I got like two sales and I was getting like one to two sales a week for a T-shirt that you selling for 25 bucks, that’s really not that much. So I was looking into like, how do I get more sales? A lot of it was like, okay, you got to niche down or pick a niche. So, you know, I picked a niche that I was really familiar with at that time, which was like rapper T-shirts, and I knew a lot about rap quotes and all that. And after I started doing that, I started to pick up and I was getting like If, instead of two sales a week, it was like 20 sales a day.
Jeremy Weisz 10:03
So you niche down from the T-shirts to rap T-shirts in quotes from rappers.
Nikita Vakhrushev 10:09
Yes, exactly. Who are your favorite rappers. Kendrick Lamar by far is one of my favorites. I love Run The Jewels, Gucci Mane, and I can’t deny that 21 Savage. So I had all of those different rappers, like quotes on a t-shirt, and people would just eating it up. And it was doing really, really well at the time. And then I unfortunately had a roadblock that came up. And it was basically people that were also doing the same thing that I was doing, but undercutting me on prices, almost to the point where it was unprofitable for me.
Jeremy Weisz 10:49
How were they doing that thing?