Pete Williams 4:41
Yeah, sure. So that that businesses that groups now at 15 years old, we’ve got about three or four companies in the group. We sort of mentioned a few of them before so thank you for the free PR. So yeah, ecommerce business with the largest headset reseller in the country here in Australia. We’ve got a carrier. So like think you know, at&t. But smaller. And the business really started about 15 years ago selling and installing traditional phone systems for businesses. So I’ve got two business partners in that company. And they started the business a couple of years before I kind of came along. And they’re doing something different in the telco space. And I sort of stumbled across them, we did a little bit of work together. And we kind of realized there was this thing called Google that was dying to kind of take hold of the internet, generally way to kind of talk about Google in its infancy, but 1516 years ago, you know, it was just dying to kind of get really well known. And yeah, the office managers, the people who own the small businesses that were going to the internet to search for solutions to their problems, you know, rather than going to the yellow pages, and the things that, you know, you know, we used to do back in business these days, you know, of course, you go to Google, it’s where everyone does everything these days is the internet. But Google was kind of starting to take hold in Australia, we realized that no one was kind of marketing, telecommunications products, phone systems and stuff in Australia on the web. So we kind of pivoted the business into that space. And, you know, for years and years, we could have owned
Jeremy Weisz 6:09
early on ecommerce,
Pete Williams 6:10
early on ecommerce. There also just early on lead gen as well, just purely generating leads for our physical phone system sales. Now, we’re not telco guys, you know, I still 15 years old now still don’t know how to install a program, a phone system. And we basically started generating the leads, and we were a sales and marketing company. And we were generating the leads from from online. And we were basically selling a phone system solution to a business, you know, seven or eight handsets, whatever they needed. But what we did, though, is to scale his business is we actually outsourced all the actual implementation. So we were, as I said, purely sales marketing. And that’s what we really cared about was making the lead the phone ring, and then obviously covering that sale, and we outsource the installation, which was great to start with, no, we scaled very, very quickly, we can sell and support clients, you know, all around the country, because we were basically just finding subcontractors everywhere through the installation. So it was a really smart way we thought, initially, to basically prove the business model prove the market and scale. And it was, but you know, a few years in, we kind of hit this class ceiling. And we weren’t really growing our overall revenue. And we were kind of sort of just, you know, banging our heads against the wall, essentially. And we sort of sat back went, Okay, well, what’s, what’s the problem here? What, what’s actually going on? And we kind of went back and Okay, well, you know, we’re doing really well, you know, having people find us, this is, you know, the internet, we’re doing well, with that, we’re doing well with our conversions, and our sales pipe, and all that sort of stuff. And, you know, things like Pipedrive, you mentioned is an amazing tool to help manage your sales processes. And we know we’ve done stuff like for years, and did really well with that. But the more we can analyze, and we kind of realize that well hang on, you know, we sold, you know, all these clients 12 months ago, none of them have come back and spend any more money with us what, what’s going on there, you know, I’ve had, you know, this, you know, hundreds of hundreds of clients every, every sort of month or so joining us. And then we kind of, you know, step back and realize that, well, actually our business model was causing this problem. In that what was happening is you think about it, you know, if you went and bought a phone system for your business, and someone came in and stored it with your white gloves on, gave you the service and trained you and gave you that sort of support, who you going to call when you want to extend the system or make ads moves and changes to the programming, you’re going to call the person actually turned down a relationship or Yeah, people with a screwdriver actually kind of installed it, not the company kind of just sold you the solution, then kind of, you know, passed you on, we kind of realized that was a limitation to the growth of the business. You know, I’m sure we’ve all heard it before, like, you know, it’s, it’s five times easier to sell to an existing customer than a new one, those kind of overuse analogies. They’re true, they’re overused, but they are true. And
Jeremy Weisz 8:52
sometimes we need a slap in the head and reminder of those things. Because we always go after the new and shiny and what we realize is adding value to our current clients or customers who know they can trust us is a lot easier.
Pete Williams 9:04
Absolutely. And that was the biggest problem for us is we kind of were just that naive or arrogant. I don’t know which which which word we should use. But, you know, hindsight, kind of you could say both around that because you just worry about, and we because we were doing so well with lead gen, we kind of just thought over the phone tree. But to answer that phone call for the next next new lead next year prospect, it’s
Jeremy Weisz 9:23
a good problem to have also, you know,
Pete Williams 9:24
it was a great problem to have. But, you know, we didn’t necessarily our customers, you know, it’s the level of love that we do now. And so basically from that we sort of sat down a bit, okay, let’s look at all the inputs that that drive a business, whether you know, whether you are a telco business, you’re an e commerce store, you’re a service provider doing with website design, or podcasting, or you’re a SAS or whatever, but you’re a hairdresser. You know, let’s look at all the different business models we could find and figure out what were the key drivers that drove the revenue and the profit of the business. Because obviously, we realized, well, one of the things we weren’t That was repeat business transactions per client. So we sat down and started thinking through these. And that’s kind of over a period of time. Like, I’d love to say the, you know, the, the hero’s journey, evolution stories, we sat down with a whiteboard one afternoon and came up with this mystical brand new model that changed the world. And, you know, that’s never the truth. It’s always as the marketing story. But the truth took us a while. But over time, we kind of realized those seven key things that we found that kind of drove revenue for businesses that we looked at, and our business, and we kind of went through this and you know, looked at all the seven areas, but Okay, that’s really interesting, let’s make sure we actually spend time every month or every quarter, focusing on each of these seven areas, because when we do that actually makes the impact of the profit. And then the crazy thing we actually found was that when we actually increased each of the seven areas, by just 10%, like to nothing too drastic, not a, not a miracle changes to small tweak of the dial in every area, the profit double. And then we do another round of no 10% wins effectively across the seven areas and profit will double again. And it became this kind of ritual for us as these are the things we’re going to focus on when we try to work on the business. There’s still customer service to do and operational headaches and staffing and what sort of stuff you have to do in a business to sort of run it. But when you kind of take that, you know, Michael Gerber approach of working on your business in it that he missed type of analogy, you know, I think he did a great job telling people that working on not in, but he kind of got tell people what to work on. He left that part of the story out of like, well, what’s the areas when you work on your business? What are the things you should do? What are the dials, you should be focusing on. And that’s kind of what we kind of stumbled upon. It’s worked really well for us across our group. And that’s sort of the evolution of the telco, and then sort of how that kind of parlayed into the growth of the telco. And then this framework that we’ve been able to just use over and over again,
Jeremy Weisz 11:49
so talk about the framework a little bit, because I know you’ve heard of the seven lovers.
Pete Williams 11:53
Jeremy Weisz 11:55
So you can get this book on Audible, and people can listen to it on Audible as well. So
Pete Williams 11:58
yep, I bought it. So 10% Wins, both of those can tell you that. So fundamentally, you know, again, you probably hear these things, and people go, Oh, yeah, that sort of sounds obvious. But I guess the question is the slap in the face comment that you made earlier? The question you need to ask is, are you actually spending time each of these areas? So you know, suspects is the first one like how are you getting more people to know about your business? That’s the advertised? That’s the marketing? How are you getting awareness or traffic to your website, if you’re an e commerce store, for example, then you’ve got this thing. You know, conversions, obviously, how many people actually turn around actually, from your website visitors actually convert to be a buyer. Again, they’re two pretty obvious things, traffic and conversion. We hear that all the time. But there’s one missing piece in between those two that a lot of people don’t really take time to think about, and its prospects. It’s what’s that micro commitment that people make between being a suspect and becoming a customer. A really good analogy is, let’s say you’re a clothing retailer, you’re going into the changing rooms actually trying on that dress. That’s a good example of a micro commitment. You know, in our phone system business, for example, the micro committee is someone taking the time to actually allow us to send them a proposal. You know, you’ve got somebody who calls up and inquires about the phone system solution, that’s a suspect and somebody buys ones, obviously a conversion. But they’re in between, well, what’s that micro commitment, someone’s willing to spend time we qualify each other? Yeah, we could be a good fit. Here’s a proposal. So I think it’s really important to actually measure all of those three things, suspects, prospects, and conversions, because each of those are slightly different steps. And the way you communicate to a suspect is actually different to the way you talk to a prospect, for example. So there’s your first three, and that’s basically a sales funnel, then you’ve got your revenue. So your revenue is driven by two things, average item price, and items per sale. So again, it’s these are two distinct questions. It’s like, well, are they going to buy the silver or the gold model of the products you sell? That’s your price point, can you get people to buy a higher price point item? And then can you get them to buy the fries? You know, we’re using a lot of overuse analogies here today. But would you like fries with that? You know, how are you getting people to buy the phone system plus the headset? How are you getting them to buy the podcast editing, plus the social media snippets that you can produce as well and people put it on their Twitter’s or their Instagrams or Facebook’s, you know,
Jeremy Weisz 14:21
I just had someone texted me asked me for that today. Funny, funny thing you say that let’s see let’s
Pete Williams 14:27
you say okay do to buy more than just the core product you know, as the hairdresser How do you get them to get the haircut but also by the shampoo to take home and use as well. So that was drives you revenue is items per sale in average item price. You got the transactions, obviously we spoke about that before about our biggest embarrassment was is we just were ignoring our clients. So what systems and processes you have in place in your business, whether you’re using that the email tool that you mentioned earlier that can you know, drive traffic back to your ecommerce store. You know, email has been massive for us in our e commerce divisions or Driving repeat business, we’ve got some really good automated emails that go out off the back of someone making a purchase to get them to come back and buy again. It’s automated systematic. And then you’ve got your margins, obviously, what are you doing to drive the margins in your business, not just your gross profit, but costs and production and stuff like that. So there’s your seven levers is really, it’s nothing really remarkable when you sit down and just hear it suspects, prospects, conversions, average item, price, items per sale, transactions and margins, these seven areas. But the biggest thing you know, is that 10% winners do rather than having to try and I’ve got to double my business, I’ve got to double my traffic, okay, at twice many people per website, that’s damn hard work. I try to double anything. But okay, well, going from 1000 visitors a week to 1100 let’s just say that’s just by recent tweaking some AdWords copy, or doing a little bit of SEO, or finding one more avenue to drive traffic, it’s not a hard task, the attempts at winning, they’re increasing your conversion rate from 22%, to 24, and a half percent, you know, small tweaks on your landing page and your copy, testing the color of your buttons on your website, some of these small things can make massive changes. You know, there’s a newspaper in the UK who was looking at doing some sort of conversion optimization and sort of looking at how they can increase their subscribers online. And all they did was put some trust logos, you know, secured shopping and trust logos on their order form and increase the conversion rate by 12%. Now, some very small tweaks and get those 10% wins. And then when you look at them across all seven areas, because you’ve spent time focusing on every area individually, that adds up to a doubling of your profit, it’s quite incredible. It’s basic math, but seven small 10% wins, which are much more accessible and easy to achieve. Compared to trying to double something w conversion rate or double your traffic, it actually gives you a much better impact. And that kind of is the framework that we continually work through, we just focused on those seven areas religiously, everyone, and just keep cycling through them.
Jeremy Weisz 17:03
You know, Pete I love to hear your structure for going through them as a business do you how often you revisit those? I’m wondering your format, you have, you know, departments go Okay, this month, look at the conversions, and you’re in charge of 10%. How does that work on a granular level within your company? Question?
Pete Williams 17:22
Yeah, absolutely. Well, so what we try and do as we have scheduled changes, definitely based on the business and you know, the size of the business, obviously, the bigger the business, the harder it becomes to kind of find those 10% wins, because you may have already looked at them for three or four years. But fundamentally, we try and have a schedule, whether it’s monthly, or quarterly or weekly, depending on the maturity of the business in half hour, we are down to play but effectively it’s a it’s monthly, so every single month to try and double the profit overall. So at this time, you’re like
Jeremy Weisz 17:49
I’ve been doing daily, I want to double the profit daily. Yeah,
Pete Williams 17:54
please, it’s possible. Yeah.
Pete Williams 17:56
If you’re brand new person haven’t done a whole lot, then obviously, it’s a lot more opportunity. So it can work. So literally sit down at the start of the month, and we’re going okay, this month is prospect month. And we’ll literally get in the boardroom with the marketing team or the sales team or whoever is relevant to that particular part of the business. And we’ll brainstorm Okay, what are the what’s the stuff we can do this month to increase the number of prospects we get? And it might be okay. Well, you know, in our e commerce business, for example, we define a prospect as someone who actually clicks the Add to Cart button. So they’re on their website, and there’s basically taking a product off the shelf and put it in the shopping trolley, the digital version of that, you know, every business has a different definition of a prospect. You know, the phone system, when I said before with someone who calls for proposal, you know, somebody getting a free quote for lawn mowing business might be their version of a prospect. So you’ve got to define what it is for you first, but then we’ll say okay, well, it’s about time to add to cart. Alright, let’s look at how ecommerce store layout. What are we going to do this month to try and add, click add more ads to cart, we’re going to change the addition of the Add to Cart button, we’re going to change the size of it the color of it, we’re going to reposition the pricing page. Well, we’ll just look at what we can split test in that regard. Now, the next month in another division of the business, you know, we might be looking at conversion. So how do we you know, increase the conversion rate? Well, okay, let’s review our proposals. Because, you know, someone who becomes a prospect has received a proposal for a phone system later another business, let’s look at how we can change our proposal that because the more we can give validation about their business and our offerings and our proposals, the more likely someone’s going to go from a prospect to a conversion. So adding images, changing the copy, while one of the systems we have in place at automate, you know, follow up between the prospect and a conversion. And once they’ve received the proposal, what automation Do we have what pipe drive system we have in place to actually make sure that our sales team is actually managing the pipe from prospect to conversion? How are we putting a bit of follow up in do we add a text message or an alert in that process to at seven days a person gets a text message and say, Hey, I hope the prize was gone. Well, I’d love to answer any questions you’ve got like little things like that and We basically try and go, Okay, let’s brain dump all the ideas we have for a 10% win this month. And then fundamentally, it’s a bit of a session where it’s, you know, no negative, it’s like, you can’t pull someone’s idea apart, it’s like, let’s throw up all the ideas. And then effectively, it’s a bit of a voting system almost. Okay, we will then discuss which one do we think is going to have the more impact? You know, obviously, we try and go for a bigger win than a 10% win, but we try and find that impact. And then it’s okay, now we’ve got three weeks to implement it, and track it and test it. And then basically, next month, it’s the same thing again, next lever, come together, think of the ideas, pick the best one, implement it, rinse and repeat. And it’s just there’s that one project every month, you know, because I think it’s like a four week sprint. It’s a four week sprint. Exactly right. And, and we’re not trying to do stuff that’s going to take 30 days of someone’s time to implement because they’ve got other stuff to do you still running your business, you still have to, you know, maintain previous things you’ve implemented, sometimes you might have done something, and it’s broke, or, you know, staff had stuff to do, you know, I was just sitting here going, my whole job is just to implement seven levers ideas, like that’s just it could be. But I think business doesn’t work like that in a real world, we’ve got to be realistic about it. So, you know, it’s, it’s that it’s like, hey, let’s find this guy. That’s the product for the month, you still got all your normal duties you got to do on a daily basis to have the business continually run. But it’s one project let’s implement one project a month. That’s a four week sprint, a perfect way of looking at it.
Jeremy Weisz 21:28
I’m curious if you take me to one of these brainstorming sessions. Yeah. And the wall. And, you know, I love your rule for brainstorming is just get everything out. Don’t shoot down ideas, because that’s what brainstorming is. One idea that maybe seems crazy actually leads to another idea. That’s amazing. So you just don’t want to shut people down from sharing. But I’m wondering what ideas when you put it on the wall with posters or whatever it is, and then you voted on it? Maybe one of these wasn’t the one you voted on? Like, maybe you voted on a different one that turned out really, really good. That came from someone else? Like what was one of those things that made it to the top? Most Marty’s
Pete Williams 22:17
most voted? For whatever reason that the one that comes to my mind was years ago with the headset business was the color of the site. Like there was a discussion that we should make the colors more pinkish, and, and I’m like, Okay, I think this was green at the time from him. I can’t remember. But I remember that people, like, we should change the color. And I’m like, really? Like, what, like change, like the general theme of the site? Um, I don’t I like that doesn’t I just couldn’t quite grasp the time. And yeah, there was an argument about our demographics female, generally, for headsets. It’s the office manager and not trying to be sexist. It’s just the demographic data that the office managers or the wife or the business owner is the person who’s buying the headsets just seems to be that way. Or at least was at the time, so let’s make it pink and white. Women going to buy a market that’s pink, that anyway, the team said, Yes, try it. Am I right, and it’s been basically pink ever since peaky perfectly So ever since. So that’s kind of one example of where it’s fit. And we do that we sort of, you know, there’s this
Jeremy Weisz 23:17
any surprise you I love that that? Yeah. It’s like, I guess that’s what we voted on. We’ll try it. And yeah,
Pete Williams 23:24
it’s a bit surprising. But other sort of stuff has been weird.
Jeremy Weisz 23:31
I’m trying to think cross
maybe in maybe the margins perspective, cuz, you know, what I like about when you talk is, you’re talking in profit, not like just increasing overall sales, which you can be a Vandy metric. So, you know, maybe talk about the market, watch what’s helped shift improve margins.
Pete Williams 23:53
All I think the biggest one for us is something that one of my business partners seems to have stumbled upon, in his genius, that is this concept that we’ve kind of termed target rebates. And I don’t know if that’s really a technical term or just a term we kind of use internally. But so one of the things we did early on is, you know, obviously trying to get a 10% win in their margins, obviously, reducing costs, obviously. So so how do we get better buying, you know, our supplies at the time this this applies to so many businesses now? I’ve seen it work so often is it you know, supplies like well, you don’t do enough volume, we can’t give you the price break until you hit the next volume of revenue, also purchasing. So what we were able to negotiate with number of our suppliers and basically make it part of our standard negotiation these days is that it’s like okay, great. Well, we’re currently on bronze pricing, for example. Now you’re saying we can’t hit silver until we do a million dollars worth of purchasing. Okay, well, let’s negotiate that. If we hit that in this calendar year, don’t give us the pricing now but if we hit it, rebate us for the entire year’s worth of revenue back to that point as if it were from silver from day one. Yeah, and it’s you know, it’s in their incentive, you they want to incentivize us to sell more. There’s no risk on the wholesaler well as suppliers path, because from their perspective, it’s like, well, they’re not giving us the discount upfront because you know, no one’s gonna give you a discount, right going well, I promise I’ll sell you by a million dollars for me to give me the discount today, no supplier is going to believe that because what happens if you don’t, they’re screwed. But if you say let’s risk reverse it, you know, it’s up for savings as we’ll pay the normal bronze pricing all year. But on, you know, January 1, or July 1, whatever your financial year is, that if we’ve now looked back and sold the million dollars, we’ll book bought a million dollars with a product from you. We want the rebate to silver price in the entire year. That’s been one of the really cool tactics that’s worked immensely Well, for us to sort of be able to, you know, pre plan at 10% winning margins without having to, you know, force the suppliers to do something that’s not really in their best interest to start with the you can all email Pete, when you do this, can you
Jeremy Weisz 26:01
get a lot of savings straight to the bottom line? Right. So, people first of all, you can find a PeteWilliams.com.au. And there’s a contact page. So if you do this race, you know, he messaged him and let him know, you know, you mentioned something, I think this could be your, you know, a whole book that you write, which you talk about micro commitment. You know, I would read a book that you wrote about micro commitment. You know, I think you know, Robert Cialdini, I think talks about an Influence. What are some interesting micro commitments, because I know that a lot of people come to you for advice, and not just the companies you run, but a lot of advice other than the stick out that you said, you know, you need to implement this, these micro commitments. And you know, I remember listening to Andre Chaperon and if you’ve you’ve listened to or read his work, what AutoResponder Madness, just like an amazing email copywriter, and he basically has these micro commitments at the bottom of each page, you have to click to see the next page is scrolling down and making you make that that micro commitment. So what are some that stick out to you that maybe kind of get people’s juices flowing? Yeah,
Pete Williams 27:18
I think it’s, you know, it’s, it’s some obvious ones as well. It’s like, you know, heavy it’s hard to do a taste test of your product, how to get into sort of, you know, you go to the supermarket, you’ve got this little sample to taste test, there’s a reason for that. It’s like, that’s a micro commitment, you’ve kind of gone Oh, well, I’ll taste that food. Yeah, I might now buy it, you’re getting a step closer to the purchase. And I think, you know, every business has, that there’s some sort of step you take when you go from being a tire kicker to a qualified buyer. And it’s what is that now, you know, try on a pair of shoes, you know, I grew up you during college selling shoes with athlete’s foot, that was sort of the job I I did. And, you know, we were taught fundamentally, our first role as a salesperson athlete’s foot was not to sell them a pair of shoes, to get them to try on a pair of shoes, that was the first sale we need to actually make. So it was that micro commitment is to sit down and try a pair of shoes, they’re more likely to buy a pair trying on a dress in a clothing store. You know, allowing you to send it a proposal. It’s you know, taking that free two minute massage at the local fair. It’s you know, what’s those small things that actually if anyone does them you know, there’s some sort of commitment you actually make you know, going for a test drive in a car to car yard. You know, every business there is some sort of small commitment that you can make or that you do make mentally as you get closer to actually making a purchase. Yeah,
Jeremy Weisz 28:43
yeah, I it’s it’s a little bit hazy for me Pete as far as influenced the chill Dini so people are gonna have to fact check this, but I think that they went around and had people sign up a petition. And then later they went with like, an obnoxious sign to put on the people’s lawns. They already made a micro commitment of signing the if I’m correct, you know, that petition like in they come back with a bigger ask, which is like, I forgot the percentage conversion to just going up Hey, can I put this huge obnoxious sign on your lawn? Compared to they sign a petition and then ask for the sign on the lawn?
Pete Williams 29:20
Yeah, it was it was I think it was a they asked you to sign and support a cause Exactly. Something that was that they put the sign in the front yard to promote the cause we’re just going to cold ask if promote the cause? Much much different. Yeah. So yeah, like it’s it’s it’s incredible how that sort of stuff makes a difference. And there was you know, there’s, I think the other example in the book was where they were given flowers and asking for donation after the fact. It’s that kind of, well, that’s reciprocity, right? Yeah, it was it was a nation. Yeah,
Jeremy Weisz 29:52
it’s like people want to be congruent with their their actions. And so but there is a reciprocity too, yeah, that micro commitment as well. Um, and so yeah, even
Pete Williams 30:04
to download your free report before buying the course or the book, like, you know, there’s, there’s an argument there’s there’s two arguments. One is you building a database, but really, if someone’s going to be going to be willing to download the free thing that you’re offering, that is a micro commit to show that they actually are seriously interested in potentially consuming content around this, therefore, they’re more likely to buy it, you know, the $1 trial at Netflix, it’s that small commitment to sort of show that they are going to take that the next step. So
Jeremy Weisz 30:30
yeah, I want to do it’s probably an amazing story, as far as you know, some, you know, selling Australia’s version of Yankee Stadium, and I want to get there for a second but, but I’m just curious for yo u Pete, you know, when you were young, what did you want to do when you grow up? But obviously, you’ve you’re very entrepreneurial. With all the companies and books, what did you want to do when you’re younger?
Pete Williams 30:54
So always be in business. He I’m telling my mom tells a story that she just loves, but apparently I was like, two or three years old, and I drew arrows in crayon all the way down the hallway wall. And to my mom’s credit, apparently now, this is the way she tells a story today. So I don’t know how true it is. But I’ll tell her version, the stories. She didn’t yell at me. She didn’t tell me off first. She calmly first asked me, Why did I draw the arrows? My mum being a teacher, maybe that was a teaching teacher to the side coming out. And apparently my answer to the question of why I drew arrows down the hallway at three years old, was to say to my mom, so you can find my office? Hmm. So I think I’ve always been that way inclined, I remember I was basketball was I was obsessed with basketball, we were very involved in community basketball, and some professional basketball teams and things like that. So my dream was, as much as I love playing Boston was involved in basketball. My dream was to be an agent. So I like when Jerry Maguire even before Jerry Maguire, when Jerry Maguire, the movie came out that was like, that’s me, I want to be that agent. And I was able to talk my way into some work experience when I was 16 or 17, at one of Melbourne’s largest Australia’s largest agents, and I did some work experience there. And remember this, they said to me, come back anytime you want. And, you know, I must have impressed him somehow. They say, Come back anytime you want. Well, you know, we don’t want to do what he experienced. But every school holidays, you’re more than welcome to come back and work here and, you know, get experience and I never did. I don’t know why. Because naive, young, nervous. embarrassed. I don’t know what it was. But um, yeah, that was the dream that I never quite fulfilled.
Jeremy Weisz 32:29
Is that how you met Bruce through basketball? Absolutely. Because he played national basketball. Yeah, he actually gave me some tips and tricks on how to shoot better.
Pete Williams 32:38
So Bruce Kratz, I advise him openly now, but I’ve known Bruce since I was about seven. So that’s a crazy story. It’s really Right. Yeah. So when I first started playing basketball, the number I was given was number nine, just random. That was the uniform number I was given from the team. So my mom made me this sort of jumpsuit, I guess you call it with number nine on the back like this is the ad is like it’s a terribly line. Like you’re a full jumpsuit, blue shiny jumpsuit with a big number nine on the back. But I used to wear a basketball training, just like complete dole, like absolutely dope. That’s what I did. So anyway, I used to wear that as well to go to professional basketball games as a fan just because it was my basketball jumper. And Bruce was number nine for a club called the junk supercats, which we used to go and visit. So and you know, I love Bruce, dad, thank you.
Jeremy Weisz 33:25
biggest fan, but random
Pete Williams 33:28
person like Bruce will be the first to tell you this. I’m sure he’s like he was not a superstar. He was a good professional basketball player and had a good six or seven year career. But he was a sixth seventh man on the bench. He was never he was not a starting five player. But he was a good role player and greatest role. So like for him to have some little kid running around the stadium with his number and his back was just the bee’s knees. So that’s how we met Bruce is like go to the games. We’re in that jumper and he was not benign. So it’s like, we’re cool. He was like, you know, I was like seven or eight. He was in his 20s. And, you know, I’d be like, Can I get the ball back and it should get shipped before the guy and I ran the court throw the ball back to him and stuff. And we just built a family relationship since then. And we’ve been just Yes. Families being kicked in since then, just purely because I ran he was given number nine on my very first basketball team and mum made me the most embarrassing jumpsuit. In hindsight,
Jeremy Weisz 34:16
I want to picture that for this for this post.
Pete Williams 34:19
We’ll try and find
Pete Williams 34:21
difficult photos. I mean him back now he has done over a photo of me that I need to see the jumpsuit. So
Jeremy Weisz 34:28
fast forward to you’re 21 Yeah.
Pete Williams 34:33
So the MCG stores. This is the MCG here if you’re watching on video, there’s that’s a photo in my office with the whole mural of Melbourne behind me. So I just got back from working in America. So as I said before, during University, and my college days, I went to athlete’s foot and when I graduated, I somehow talked my way into getting a six month working visa with athlete’s foot in America. And the plan was to come across, start in Fort Lauderdale, and then work my way back across the country across different athlete’s foot stores back to LA and then fly home. Now a bit of a reconnaissance mission, I guess you’d call it kind of see what you guys were doing differently over there compared to here in Australia. So 21 year old Aussie accent landed in Fort Lauderdale, you know, an hour or so or less from Miami, South Beach, you know, I basically stayed in the one spot for six months, I didn’t leave had a great time. And then when I found I’ve met a girl was over there. And my visa ran out. So I came back to Australia with plans of going back to the US. So while I was trying to figure out a way to get back and get a new work visa, and use athlete’s foot storage opened up, so I went and actually managed that or worked in there for for six months. And it was it was a very quiet store, not a lot of foot traffic, pardon the pun. So I’d spent time behind the counters, reading books, until people came in. And one of the books I read was called The One Minute Millionaire by Robert Allen and Mark Victor Hansen.
Jeremy Weisz 36:01
I remember that one. Yeah.
Pete Williams 36:02
Yeah, look, I wouldn’t recommend him initially go out and buy it now did interesting rate if you got some time, check it out. But I wouldn’t put it at the top of your rating list. However, in like one chapter, on like, one page, one paragraph almost on one page. It just mentioned this story of a guy in the 80s who bought all the timber that was part of the Brooklyn Bridge walkway. And Rumor has it is he made like a million dollars, selling these little certificates up of the Brooklyn Bridge with an inch by inch piece of the timber from the walkway. Now, Mike, that’s a bloody good idea. How do I take that and do it here in Australia, so started thinking like what’s going on? And the MCG as you said before Australia’s Yankee Stadium, it’s 100,000 state sporting Stadium, it’s where the straight Ozzy rules football grandfathers every, it’s just, it’s the mecca of sport in Australia. Anyway, part of the stadium had just been pulled down, like, you know, weeks before for redevelopment. And I remember going to footy with my dad, and sitting on these really hard, uncomfortable wooden seats. And I’m like, that’s my ticket. That’s my opportunity. So I made some phone calls. And actually, Bruce, who you talked about before, actually kind of helped me out with this project as well. So this is just getting very incestuous. So we’ve had a few phone calls, we found the wrecking company that was doing the demolition of the MSA, J and said, Hey, Joyce have some of the timbers still from the wrecking. And they’re like, hey, we’ve got some of the timbers just in the back of the warehouse. But we’ve also got this carpet. It sounds really weird. But the Melbourne Cricket Club, which is a section of the stadium is really quite famous. It’s like a 50 year waitlist to become a member. It’s a rite of passage, if you have a son or daughter, you basically you put them on the waitlist. And then you know when they turn 30 or 40 or 50, they get the member and they get to go to any event at the stadium, etc, etc. Anyway, the carpet of the members area of this part of the grandstand is really famous, it’s terribly ugly, it’s got red and blue, it has the logo, the mccc on it. So it’s really well known in Australia. Anyway, these rating companies have actually got a lot of the carpet as well, it was in the dining room, it’s just sitting in the back of the warehouse. And I’m like, Oh, hang on a second, that’s just even more valuable and more recognizable. So I literally like I buy it all over the phone, we bought it all, and fundamentally made a series of memorabilia pieces that with a photo of the MCG, a piece of this really famous carpet, and a plaque and then, you know, I was up to my nose and credit card death debt, sorry, not death or death end it. You know, South Beach cocktails are not cheap for 21 year old six months, a lot of credit card debt. So you couldn’t sort of do any marketing at the time. So I just wrote a press release. 21 year old sells the MCG for 500 bucks. And it went bananas here in Australia use TV print, and basically just sold a series of memorabilia pieces, which was effectively you know, Australia’s sporting Mecca.
Jeremy Weisz 39:02
That’s amazing. That was how do you decide what to charge people for that? Good question.
Pete Williams 39:09
I think it was probably.
Jeremy Weisz 39:12
And then when you offer to buy, did they even know what to sell
Pete Williams 39:16
to you? For me what I was, before I literally bought a friend’s credit card to make to do it was a few $1,000 because like, you’re in the business of Reiki, they don’t understand that they were just like, well, it’s sitting here we’re not going to get rid of it but we don’t know what to do with it really so. Well, there’s actually early talks we actually filmed the pilot for documentary read this whole thing a couple of weeks ago so it could be something really cool coming out telling the whole story because someone else also at the same time had the same idea there’s a bit of a battle we’re both trying to sell it both 21 to a whole nother story is really cool. But in terms of you know, they just sort of went are yo here’s a price x $1,000. And I’m like done. Because I didn’t have any value for it like they they kind of assumed I was going to you know, carpet A poolroom or a man cave or something like that, you know, rather than actually sell it off, I didn’t necessary tell them what I was doing with it for a big key, that’d be a private in terms of pricing? Look, I don’t think there was any great science behind it. To be honest, I think it was pretty much a mixture of what’s gonna cost to make the frames. And well, let’s try to keep it under 500 bucks. So it’s a price point that people will buy. And it’s a good story. So I think it was just more of a finger in the air price. But at the time, I was 21. You know, I don’t think there’s any too much science behind it. There was a great little project and just, you know, got my first book deal off the back of it time, the whole story. And the whole, the whole venture in its own right has so many little curves and, and ups and downs and, you know, got a cease and desist letter from mcg at one point. And his answer was because I was so used to working athletes, but at the time, so literally, the framing company, I’d dumped carpet at the frame is someone would fax through an order or find an order. This is literally says, you know, 20 years ago, so faxes, the orders coming through. It’d be like, john, we had two more orders today, can you please make two more frames, so I get paid charge your credit card, then make the frame. So it’s cashflow positive business from day one, it
Jeremy Weisz 41:09
was brilliant. You were like set up whole drop shipping. Yeah, out of sheer dumb
Pete Williams 41:14
luck, I’d love to have to think that I was, you know, I was brilliant mind I had a healthy plant, it was literally like, well, I can’t afford to pay for the framing first. So let me just make the orders and make the sale. Or tell the person that look, you know, it’s gonna take a couple of weeks to make the frames because you know, they’re all being handmade, and it’s timing. So it wasn’t sort of trying to bluff anybody, they knew that they were pre paid to secure their piece and to get delivered in a couple of weeks time. So I charge the client for in a box, I tell john make the frame, he’d go and make the frame, he’d then invoice me after the fact, the courier company would go and pick it up and deliver it to the person I’d literally just be either athletes for the home, kind of Amanda, with this positive cash flow business out of sheer dumb luck. And that’s kind of I guess, you know why we built the telco the way we did as well, because I kind of realized after the fact with the MCG project that the way that was built, because of sheer necessity was actually a nice business model, make the sale, get paid, get someone else to do the actual effort and delivery. So that’s kind of how the tell card kind of model came about as well as sort of went off, that was actually good. There was some underlying intelligence in there. We didn’t realize at the time, let’s parlay that into the telco. But then obviously, the the the glass ceiling issue that we spoke about earlier happened as well. So
Jeremy Weisz 42:26
I love that story. Pete You know, when the documentary comes out, if and when it comes out, I look forward to watching it. One last question, Pete and first of all, thanks, thanks for sharing your experience the seven lovers and you know, it’s a framework I think anyone can follow and execute on piece by piece every month and start to improve their business. Before I ask the last question, I want to point people towards PeteWilliams.com.au and check out your books you know, if you go to the page, there’s a Books tab you can check out the books the books are also an audible on Amazon that you know he has Cadence he has 10% Wins he’s got other books you know that actually precede that as well that you could check guys on
Pete Williams 43:09
the stock? The only one stock just read Cadence and 10% Wins.
Jeremy Weisz 43:13
Um, where else should we point people towards online to learn more? Check out more about
Pete Williams 43:19
Yeah, well, 7levers.com is being rebuilt at the moment. So we get hit over to 7levers.com shortly there’ll be a brand new website there with a whole bunch of resources and stuff to help people around that framework. I’m on Instagram and Twitter @Preneur PRENEUR. It’s probably the best places to to hang out and connect with me and yeah, let me know that crazy stories. If anyone does get some 10% wins. I love hearing crazy stories about what people have done. You know, the story the other day that this is research being done in the UK, where they’ve been testing what music plays in fast food outlets and how that affects orders. And apparently Ed Sheeran most people people buy more desserts than any other music really bizarre like why Ed Sheeran increased dessert sales by like 8% I crazy stories it’s really cool. He’s a really funky different exams or what have people have had their 10% wins.
Jeremy Weisz 44:13
I love that. Yeah, so play Ed Sheeran if you’re a restaurant. That’s it. So check on 7levers.com PeteWilliams.com.au check out the books. Last question. P you know, I got your book on Audible. Love it. I’m curious some of your favorite business books outside of the ones that you’ve written. Oh,
Pete Williams 44:32
good questions. So I have a bit of a pile next to my desk and stuff that I can give Eric Hello. Yeah, I’ve got Trillion Dollar Coach is a book I give out a lot. So I love that
Jeremy Weisz 44:43
who wrote that
Pete Williams 44:44
book. Eric Schmidt and Jonathan Rosenberg. They are the guys from Google. So right How Google Works and they’re right Trillion Dollar Coach. It’s a book about a guy called bill Campbell, who was kind of like the business coach to some of the Biggest minds in Silicon Valley so he was awesome. Another book I give out a lot. Hence we’ve got a bunch of copies is My Life in Advertising account. You probably can’t see that easily with the light but My Life in Advertising was Hopkins by Claude Hopkins. Oh, yeah. Yeah, old school copywriter. Love it. That’s brilliant. This is one of my favorite books last year. Thinking in Bets Hmm. Well, Annie Duke she’s a poker player. And she wrote this book about thinking in bets and this whole concept of resulting, and is thinking about that, you know, we often in hindsight, look at a decision we made based on the result, not based on the logic of the decision in that in poker, you can play the mathematically smart hand and still lose. And in poker. Simple say, I shouldn’t have played that hand because I lost Well, no, you should have played their hand because mathematically It was a right hand to play. Don’t allow the result to change and in hindsight, affect your decision making. So that’s that’s kind of the I guess the theme level. That’s really cool. By the way,
Jeremy Weisz 46:05
when they ask you this question, I had no idea you had piles of books around you just so you know, the books. Oh, yeah. Yeah, keep going if you have other ones.
Pete Williams 46:13
Well, he had no home. I’m trying my home. I’ve got some other piles of Bluefishing by Steve Sims. Yeah, the book.
Jeremy Weisz 46:21
The Sims as a guest been a guest on a podcast and his talk about blue Yeah, blue Yeah,
Pete Williams 46:26
that’s a really good book. also bought recently that I’ll be giving out to people
I’m probably one of my friends books that I think you Like, Comment, Share, Buy it’s a guy called Jonathan Creek who’s a video editor and marketing guide so this books really interesting talks about video storytelling and how to kind of tell and craft really short stories so social media video stories, not kind of talking about how you make a one hour documentary it’s how do you create short snapshots depicts a video that are engaging with people so like, comment share by
Jeremy Weisz 47:02
Were you listening to any though you mentioned The One Minute Millionaire when you were a young entrepreneur? Were there any of your favorites old school was
Pete Williams 47:12
Cialdini? Definitely Cialdini was a big one. But all this stuff so this kid like it was like Kiyosaki said Rich Dad Poor Dad back in the day. The One Minute Millionaire definitely listened to that a few times, obviously. Go to my audio book, sell it well, so I listened to recently because I was on here that’s worth listening to. Yeah, it’s such a cool book recently from Harvey Mackay called Dig Your Well Before You’re Thirsty. So this is like from like the 90s I think either.
Jeremy Weisz 47:44
No, Harvey Mackay on audio cassette tape.
Pete Williams 47:49
Jeremy Weisz 47:50
I used to listen to his stuff. And I think he had um, I’m trying to see which which books it was but yeah, which is the one you listen to dq Well, before you’re thirsty. It’s um,
Pete Williams 48:06
it’s about networking and relationships. Yeah, so that was really interesting. Yeah, otherwise
Jeremy Weisz 48:11
I remember Swim with the Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive. Yeah, I can’t remember did he do what you don’t learn in Harvard Business School or maybe that was someone else might have been here maybe it was swimming to swim with the sharks anyway assume assume the sharks definitely. Um, yeah.
Pete Williams 48:26
Another one I loved late last year was The Psychology of Money. Yeah, that was a really good book by Morgan Housel pasal
Jeremy Weisz 48:34
I have four credits in my audible account so these are
Pete Williams 48:37
this will begin obviously that is ones if this is stuff that kind of sticks out you
Jeremy Weisz 48:43
i know I love it. No, I love it. Yeah, check out that check out more check out you know PeteWilliams.com.au you know go and check out Cadence highly recommended highly recommended myself highly recommended by Dean Dutro height you know, respect from Worth eCommerce. And check out other episodes of the podcast Pete to be the first one to thank you. This was awesome. Thank you so much.
Pete Williams 49:05
And I thank you so much for having me anytime.