Search Interviews:

Jeremy Weisz 6:43 

What feedback valuable feedback that you get from pitch coaches?

Shaheem Alam 6:49 

So yeah, I learned a lot from my manager at the time, like when I first started door to door like I suck at sales. Terrible. For my first three weeks, I made no sales and no, it’s commission only. So I was working three weeks, six days right a week, making no money, but what flip the switch was when he like taught me to take control. And so what would happen was, we’d be in the basement of like the whoever we were going into the basement to look at a furnace. And then we would have like a whole little pitch and presentation. And then we have to go upstairs, get their gas bill and start like running like savings calculations and really start the full presentation upstairs. And I would have a hard time getting to that. I’d be stuck in the basement and I end up outside of the house. Right? So what he said was like, he’s like, sure he don’t ask them just take control, just tell them, hey, let’s pop upstairs, grab your Enbridge bill, that’s the gas company, publishers grab your Embers bill and we’ll get you sorted and just walk off. That’s it and I tried that and it worked, he’s like just walk off you’re in their house, they’re not going to just stay in the basement, they’re gonna follow you up and then just go sit at the table. And they’re gonna come they’re gonna give you the average bill and you’re gonna start the conversation and literally the next day I closed my first deal, two deals actually that day so that was like a huge game changer of like taking control.

Jeremy Weisz 8:07 

So pitch practice then what was next in the day?

Shaheem Alam 8:11 

Then the formal training starts. And this is like I implement this to this day with like my sales team and in our cold callers and everything in our company, but formal training so this is when we’re learning like the seven steps to an HVAC sale the five steps to a water filter sale, the psychology of selling body language tonality, all of these things these were actual structured lessons day in and day out week in week out and you’d as a rep if you’ve been there for three months you’ve heard the same presentation so many times but like you’re always learning and then you’re just literally become second nature to us. So that goes on for about an hour. And then there’s a big like “rah, rah” like motivational speech everybody gets pumped up we do a chat start screaming and then it’s out to the vans and out to the field.

Jeremy Weisz 8:56 

What were some of those steps that were essential?

Shaheem Alam 9:01 

I mean it’s like the basic kind of Seven Steps to a sale type of stuff. I remember like those ones it was like Intro. So the specific to the actual like sale so for example like the first goal is to like just introduce yourself and like have some kind of like just don’t get the door slammed in your face right the next thing is like to get into the house because you can’t sell them at the door you have to go look at the equipment they have in their home and then it was like the thing was like the pitch the presentation, something and under close I don’t I don’t remember it honestly. Yeah.

Jeremy Weisz 9:38 

I’m just curious because the main essentials in there it’s probably the middle parts maybe specific but really it reminds me of kind of direct response copywriting a little bit like the goal the headline is to get into the subhead goal the subhead is, like you were getting there you have to pour, and then you have to get in the door. Yeah. And you have to do, probably that part…

Shaheem Alam 10:07 

That was one of the steps as well as build or create the need. And that’s what you’re doing in the basement by asking them questions. And then it’s the presentation. And the close.

Jeremy Weisz 10:15 

Yeah. So it’s really interesting. Because like you said, there’s a formula to it. And but like the middle part of the content may be a little bit different. But probably, they’re all kind of similar as far as the steps go. It’s a sales process. Yeah. Like, oh, so now you go out in the field. Now, what are you literally knocking on doors? Just going door to door?

Shaheem Alam 10:39 

Yeah. So we get into vans, right. And again, it’s a whole like opera. So we have managers or team leads that are that each have like a van. And this is like a Honda Odyssey seven-seater. And we were pre-assigned, like, Who’s going into which van and everything. So agents, no, they’re not like confused or trying to pick favorites or whatever, saying, oh, you’re assigned to this vendor going? Here we go. So the first thing we do is actually went to lunch. So we go, and we eat. And then we’ve hit the field. So that there’s no interruption for food in the middle of the day. So around one-ish, we’re at one, maybe two, we’re actually on the field. We’re getting dropping people off. And I was a rep for like a little bit. But I eventually became a team lead manager, I was running the whole offense at one point where you drop your team off to specific neighborhoods. You give them their map, like hey, like, screenshots of the map, and then you give that to them. You do like a little drive-thru, actually, of the neighborhoods you like. So there’s a whole thing here too, as you’re driving through the neighborhood, and you’re just getting them excited, right? Because you’re like, hey, man, like look at the trees like this is like a 30-year-old. Neighborhood. furnaces are definitely old, you can tell the furnaces are old based on the type of ventilation of the houses too. So when you see a lot of those you get excited, like it’s like a good, right neighborhood. Look, it’s like a bunch of townhouses you can knock out like so many doors in such a small period of time, like, all these kinds of things, you just kind of get them amped up, what I would do is on that drive, I would do a couple of things. So on the way to the first neighborhood, I would do like a something called bid fire. It’s like a whole like objection-handling type of an exercise. And I would just like throw up like five or 10 bucks for whoever wins. So that’s just get them to get some pump. Now when it’s time for the first drop-off, I asked them, hey, what song you want to listen to write whatever song they want, we’re gonna play it, we’re gonna blast it on the way to their turf. And then when we’re there, yeah, do that little drive-thru and then drop them off, get out of the van, they’re dropping off, they’re putting on their gear, they’re getting the binder ready, give them a little bit of a pump up talk as well. And then they’re off and then they’re going home so you can get them like running to the first door. That’s like, that’s what you want.

Jeremy Weisz 12:44 

I asked these questions, because I feel it’s probably stuff you do with your team. And because this is what you’re doing, I mean, you’re doing it for other companies. But it sounds like there’s a lot of mindset stuff because it’s brutal to do cold calling.

Shaheem Alam 13:02 

It is yeah, we had people. This is not an ideal scenario. But we had like people that would come in day in and day out. And they want to make money for like, months. I would wonder like, why are you still here like you could work kind of McDonald’s and make more, but they love the culture, the love the energy, the love the support. And I had the biggest team out of all the managers. That’s why I eventually became office manager. But that’s what it was. It was like that culture that had built. That’s what like, drove everything because it sucks to knock door especially in Toronto, where it’s like minus 20 minus 30, blizzards, it doesn’t matter. We’re out there. We’re knocking doors. So, yeah.

Jeremy Weisz 13:43 

It’s interesting, because each step that you’re talking about is mindset and getting people’s mindset right from the beginning, when you’re actually doing the pitch coaching, and then you’re getting pumped up, and then like doing bonding in the car, and then the bonding, making sure you’re fed. It’s all of that stuff. It’s really interesting. What was, you remember kind of a crazy story of actually. Because you don’t know what you’re showing up to? I mean, you’re knocking on the door.

Shaheem Alam 14:14 

Yeah, yeah. tons, tons of stories. Like, like, there’s some houses like you just don’t want to go into like, it just smells so bad. Like it smells like just like, I don’t know, like dog poop and cigarettes and like, nastiness, but you got to go make money right? So you go in and you just suck it up and you do it. There’s like stuff like this. We used to get told to like, “F off, get a real job.” You know, people will like record us walking down the street. They called cops on us sometimes too. And then cops show up. We told them show them all our ID and everything. They’re like, okay, just like don’t knock on that door again or something. A lot of stuff like that would happen and we just, we had been trained and then I trained my team to just like laugh it all off. Like your first reaction to anything negative is like a chuckle like, you just like smile and laugh and like you just move on to the next store. That became like second nature.

Jeremy Weisz 15:11 

It builds grit, what? So what are some of the stuff that you bring to that experience with your team now?

Shaheem Alam 15:18 

So what I learned a lot of stuff I learned, I think the one thing I learned was culture. Culture is like the most important thing in a company. We take forever to hire people. And that’s because of culture fit. And we fire really, really, really fast. Again, because of culture fit. So I think it’s really important to understand what your culture is like, it can be different, right? But what that is, and then like, really stick by that, and then your team guards that as well. So that’s what I’m definitely like doing today in the company. We know we have a team of cold callers, and BDR is they’re doing hard work. They’re like cold, emailing, cold calling LinkedIn outreach, all this stuff. So same thing of like, we have daily morning trainings, we have formalized, like training as well. And then we have coaching and call listening. We have like, check in when like one on ones with them just to see how they’re doing and all of that. So all that psychological stuff is there, we have incentives, like bonuses that we throw out, like, hey, whoever books, the most meetings today, it gets like, 50 bucks, 100 bucks, whatever. Things like that, as well. So a lot of those practices are in play in the current company.

Jeremy Weisz 16:21 

Talk about the hiring process a little bit. And what are the things you do?

Shaheem Alam 16:25 

Like in FiveRings, like right now? Yeah, FiveRings. Yeah. Yeah. Um, so we have a recruiter full-time. Initially. We only like headhunter. Really, that’s the whole we do. Like, I will say, like, 80 90% of our hiring is headhunting or it’s like referrals from existing employees. And so yeah, we reach out to people, we tell them like what the role is. And if they’re interested in chatting, and we asked a couple qualifying questions, if they pass, then cool, they get the first screening call with our recruiter, Selena. And then after that, if they pass that they get a call with the hiring manager, whoever that may be, they do like a lot of like skill-based and all the space type of questions and testing, I believe very strongly in like, not just asking questions, but actually giving them tasks. So you’re gonna cold call live on an interview with us, or there’s going to be homework after that second interview for you to like, go write out some messaging and deliver it to us and send it to us or do some research or whatever, right? So this actual test, and then once, if they pass that, and the third interview is with me, and I don’t know, I’m trusting like my hiring managers, evaluation of their knowledge and skill, I just want to know who they are as a person. I asked about their values asked about who they are, what do they like to do? What they want to achieve? Like, why do they even want to work here? Just learn about their motivations, and what gets them going and who they are as people. And then past that they’re hired.

Jeremy Weisz 17:59 

Like, you were saying, Shaheem is really interesting with the cold calling piece when someone’s commission only, right? You are in some of the people, the culture has to be really strong. And there has to be as what’s keeping them there? If, especially if they’re not making any sales? Yeah. Who who’s a good fit? Like, who? What are you looking for? In that, because it takes a certain special type of person to really do that type of position.

Shaheem Alam 18:32 

Yeah, you have to have a reason to be there. Like, that’s like, what I found was the most important thing. Like you’re trying to, like, you’re either trying to, like, prove something to yourself or to someone else, you’re either and have like, I don’t know, like crazy goals, like aggressive goals that you’d like want to achieve. And you believe you can do it. You either back against the wall, like, I don’t know, if you can get employed anywhere else for various different reasons. And like, this is all you’ve got, right? It’s like, because you can make a lot of money, like there was a lot of money made in door to door because it’s commission only, but you’re not paid well. And so, but to like, stick it out, I think it’s like that reason has to be really, really strong. So that’s number one. And then number two, it’s coachability. You need to come in and you need to be like, almost like you have to come in and almost be like moldable, right? Like just trust that like if you follow these steps, you will make money and just follow those steps like do what you’re told kind of thing as far as like the steps to the sale and all of that goes.

Jeremy Weisz 19:40 

Talk about the evolution of services when you first started, what services you offer because I know they’ve evolved. What was it like when you first started and you’re working? What was the company like actually with your wife, what the staff look like, and we can talk about the services at that time.

Shaheem Alam 19:59 

Yeah, so initially, we just started with bold LinkedIn outreach and cold emailing. That’s what we did. And it was just me and her. She like, we just somehow like scrapped it together, right? All the work that needed to get done eventually, like a few months, and we were able to hire like our first part-time employee who like did some of that work as well and just passed off some of the more manual kind of tasks. And we did more of the messaging and stuff like that. But we did like LinkedIn, then eventually, we dropped the cold email and LinkedIn outreach became our big, our only service and cold calling. But we’re selling like a lot of the LinkedIn outreach kind of stuff. Now everybody’s doing that. But back then it was like, different, it was unique, people didn’t know how to leverage LinkedIn to get leads. So we rode that wave for quite some time, and also did cold calling, as well. And those were our two core services outbound. We then eventually we added on PPC, so that’s like LinkedIn ads, Google ads, that was a very small part of our business, we started focusing more on it last year. And then getting more clients for that started growing that out a little bit more hired someone like more dedicated for it, rather than just like a contractor working part-time. So we added that piece in. And then just like by interviewing our customers and talking to them, and we used to offer a an outsourced account executive, so a closer that’s outsourced, and because one client wanted that, and we created that for them, and went really well. But when we went to go sell this to the market in general, like we couldn’t sell a single, we were not a single sale. And we learned very quickly that not very quickly, actually took longer. But we learned that companies want to keep their salespeople close their own mind outsourcing the prospecting work. And so instead of a full-time account executive, which switch that to a full-time BDR because there’s different use cases between fractional BDR type of work and full-time. So and then that’s all a big lift that we started that service September of last year. And then we started like upselling clients on it switching clients to that package where other things weren’t working. And then so that grew this year, as well. And then this year, we added on content, they very early in the year, we added on content marketing. So that’s content writing content, strategy and things like that.

Jeremy Weisz 19:59 

What is the fractional BDR? What does that look like?

Shaheem Alam 20:47 

So that’s where you’re getting a cold caller who’s doing 50 $70 per day, but that cold caller is also working for two other clients. Right. So it’s like fractional, the LinkedIn outreach stuff, it’s like using different tools to do outreach on LinkedIn. But then, again, the account manager, the research team, SDR working on several LinkedIn accounts, as well. So that’s what I mean, they’re fractional.

Jeremy Weisz 22:51 

So the BDR specifically, they focused on the cold calling piece.

Shaheem Alam 22:57 

All three, so the BDR, the full-time BDR is doing like all three, they can be doing like really manual strategic enterprise level prospecting, they could be doing volume based stuff, but across multiple channels, they can handle inbound leads that are already coming into the company, and they don’t have anybody to nurture them and really qualify them so they can handle all that. Lots of lots of different stuff, but it’s a full-time resource.

Jeremy Weisz 23:22 

Walk me through a cold call situation, because that person may be handling different types of accounts. Right? So what’s the approach when they’re calling?

Shaheem Alam 23:38 

So we always have an email sequence running as well. So we always refer to the email first, like however they open up right some people like to say the How are you thing others don’t like? It’s about whatever. So yeah, like I sent you an intro email the other day from x x company. Does that ring a bell? No, it doesn’t. Nor is it just an intro email. Those do a bit of research on your company. And I was wondering, and then we ask a question to start the conversation. And that question, if it starts the conversation, okay, cool. Now we’re in a back-and-forth or we get shut off right there?

Jeremy Weisz 24:11 

There are good ways to get past a gatekeeper, right? Because I imagined maybe they’re having a conversation not with the CEO, founder or I don’t know, maybe different businesses are trying to get in touch with the CMO or CEO or whatever it is, but are they often talking to the gatekeeper first in that situation?

Shaheem Alam 24:32 

So we got cell phone numbers, so we’re calling the lead directly.

Jeremy Weisz 24:38 

Got it. Okay, so you’re gonna gatekeepers? What are ways people, the team members build rapport quickly, because obviously you’re cold calling someone on their cell phone. What are they and I get? I don’t answer anymore of if I don’t know the number because I get so many calls on my phone. So how did they teach them to build rapport quickly?

Shaheem Alam 25:06 

Yeah, I think like, first thing is tonality. The sound like you’re a calm professional, like almost like someone that they know, the sound like you’re someone that they know, they kind of already dropped the card. That’s like one thing right off the bat. And then the second thing, you have like warm touches, like, hey, I sent you an email, you know, Does that ring a bell? And we did send that emails was there in their inbox? So that’s like, No, it doesn’t. Okay, well, you’re still let the VP of sales at this company. Right? Yeah. What’s this about? So yeah, well, this, then you ask a relevant question, you can ask a question that shows like, okay, you’re like, able to have an use, like, you know their role, you know their company, you know what they’re talking about, you’re hitting a pain point, potentially, then you again, you build a little bit more credibility, and you earn the right to a conversation. Of course, it doesn’t happen all the time, like, of course. But that’s how we do it.

Jeremy Weisz 26:00 

Yeah. And also the call itself, it feels like a follow-up call because you’re referencing an email, even though it’s the first call. So it’s almost like you’re following up even though you’ve never called them before.

Shaheem Alam 26:15 

Yeah, and I also believe, I train the team on this a lot, because I think there’s a lot of bad habits that get built up. But just like, be straight up, like be honest. Like, someone says, like, is this a sales call? To be like, yeah, it is. Do you want to give me a shot? Just straight up. People respect that. Don’t try to like go-beater. Oh, no, it’s not a sales call. I’m just trying to find out if like this, just that. Yeah, it is. Do I give me a shot? What else was I had something else in mind? Oh, well, where did you get my number from? Oh, it’s actually this database called sales, Intel. It has everybody’s phone numbers. You should try it for your sales. That’s fine. Just be honest. Yeah.

Jeremy Weisz 26:54 

Then they end up hiring you. I’m sure that happens, where you’re on a sales call. And they’re interested in how you got their information and getting on the phone with them. And they hire you from it.

Shaheem Alam 27:07 

Yeah, that’s like one of the best kind of like responses I would have for someone especially that like, they’re comparing competitors. And it’s like, okay, well, you search for everyone else, but we got to you. Right, and it worked on you, right? How do I know if it’s gonna work? Well, it worked on you. Right?

Jeremy Weisz 27:23 

So we talked a little about the evolution of the services, talk about the niche for a second and how the niche that you’ve gone after has evolved?

Shaheem Alam 27:35 

Yeah, so we’ve, like, historically, we’ve always worked with b2b tech companies, SaaS tech, whatever, startups, that’s where we worked with. But everybody knows the tech sector is getting hit really, really hard. And so we haven’t officially like pivoted, but we’re in the process of pivoting. So now we’re reaching out outside of the tech industry to other industries, we’re exploring, like, where the messaging is gonna resonate, we haven’t figured it out yet. Still in the works. But it had to happen. Because just as a business, we can’t have all our eggs in one basket. That was the same idea with the services, we had to have multiple services. I don’t know what if one day LinkedIn just shuts down as a platform, right? Our whole business is dead. So we need to have multiple services, multiple ways of like revenue streams, and multiple ways of just helping our customers to improve the offering. And the same thing with the industry. So we’re still in the midst of exploring that.

Jeremy Weisz 28:27 

How did your pricing evolve throughout the years?

Shaheem Alam 28:32 

Yeah, I think we’re charging like quadruple, or we first started with, I think, at least, and of course, it’s different packages and whatnot. But you mean, this was my weak point. This is where Nilofar, she was CEO. She made sure the finances weren’t ordered, she made sure we were always profitable. So you just have to run the numbers, you have to be monitoring your margins, and whatever makes sense. Makes sense. Because at the end of the day, it’s a business and it has to be profitable. So as we hired as we improved our services, as we added more tools and things like that, we kept up with the margins. But then also, I would say, once you have like experience under your belt, you have case studies you have like you’ve proven it, and you know you’re going to deliver results, then you can charge for that. That’s what we did to end and also, I think, as you increase your prices, you get rid of like the annoying customers as well. Like, I remember one time we were getting wares early days were like charging like $1,500 a month or something. And we kept getting like pricing objections of like, oh, we want a discount, we want a discount. And me and Nilo were just like, You know what, we’re just gonna raise our prices, instead of like lowering our prices or it’s going to raise our prices and it’s good to have someone that has money to raise a 2k a month we stop getting pricing objections, because we’re talking to people that can afford us.

Jeremy Weisz 30:00 

What type of advice do you have for people working with a family member spouse? Because obviously, you co-founded this company with your wife. There’s probably advantages and disadvantage to that.

Shaheem Alam 30:14 

Yeah, like, I feel like if you can make it work, it’s like the best possible partnership that can exist. Well, we did was we apart like it just as we were starting it, like we had these conversations, we made sure to set rules and boundaries. I think like, so talking about little rules and boundaries, right? We said, okay, we both agreed, we’re never gonna let work come into our personal life and let personal effect work. We hate each other and work, we’re gonna love each other personal, we paid each other personnel, we’re gonna love each other at work, like it just cannot overlap. That also means that making sure that work is work. And then we set time aside for personal to so we’d have like walks and dinners where it’s so easy to start talking about the business, but then you have to set that rule like, okay, we’re not going to talk about work, during this walk, or during this dinner date or whatever. Set rules. Yeah, right. So you have to set those rules and boundaries. And then I think the underlying of it is any successful relationship, you need to be able to put your ego aside, you need to be able to communicate openly and honestly, and share your thoughts and feelings. And the other person needs to be able to accept and understand your thoughts and feelings. And that’s important in a relationship. But it’s also important in a business partnership, like it’s not personal. This is just how I’m feeling. I’m just expressing it and the other person wants to understand that and vice versa. So those basic needs to be there.

Jeremy Weisz 31:45 

Yeah, it’s hard. It’s hard to do. Talk about the decision of your wife stepping away.

Shaheem Alam 31:56 

Yeah. So over time, like what Nilo likes to do is she loves the startup part of the business. Not the, okay, we’re going we’re humming like time to grow it to the next level type of thing. Like, she’s a very like, all right, I’ve got this other idea. So right now she’s building another company called FiveRings Academy, teaching Spanish English online courses. It went live a couple of months ago. What’s it called? So FiveRings Academy? Oh, got it. Yeah, just TikTok channel as well as 600,000 followers. You can interview her for that. But basically, so she’s building that, you know, that’s her project. We have, like, some real estate investments as well. So she, like manages some of that part, too. She works on that, too. So it was really like her kind of like, she was no longer I guess, like…

Jeremy Weisz 32:49 

Didn’t excite her anymore. Yeah.

Shaheem Alam 32:51 

Yeah. didn’t excite her. Yeah, exactly. It wasn’t fulfilling, it wasn’t exciting. Like, it was kind of like done, it’s time to move on. And so versus me, like, I’m fine with like, staying and like growing and kind of doing all of that kind of stuff. So that’s really where the decision came from.

Jeremy Weisz 33:05 

Talk about filling those gaps, right? When you have someone leave especially important to the company, as CEO, co-founder. Yeah. How did you go about filling the gaps?

Shaheem Alam 33:16 

Yeah, we underestimated it. Anyone else listening to this is going through that change? Like do not underestimate it. It’s so big. Few things. So yeah, like the general high-level responsibility means like, so I had already taken over like, sales for the company from her a little bit earlier, in the year as far as like our salesperson that we’re managing, but around that same time, our salesperson or cadres, like if she also resigned, and so I was a salesperson now for the company, right? That had to happen. All of my existing responsibilities, I had not handed them off yet. And so you have to create a plan. So like, we’re gonna hand them off to like, do you even have like the material that you can pass on to hand it off? Right. So I think like that was so important. The finance part. Biggest thing, I know nothing about finances, like I was the worst, made like door to door, I made a lot of money, I didn’t keep a single dime, literally. So what we found was like, she actually needed to train me on the different things that she looks at. And now we have a financial controller, and he runs all the analysis and things like that, but he gets instruction from me. And so that was like one of the biggest things were like now like more recently, she actually sat down and like taught me some things and that helped us because that was a big, start to make some mistakes, basically, along the finance side of things. And then also we hired we hired some people to like she was kind of overseeing marketing. So we hired a fractional CMO. We brought in another advisor as well to just kind of like, again, provide guidance and went on to be that sounding board that she was before and she still is kind of Loida live with her. But that still, like needed to happen. So we hired some people as well. Hired like a recruiter Duke, she was like HR and recruiting. So we hired somebody there to solve. But I think like, it’s just understanding like, okay, it’s not just roles, but like its strengths and weaknesses. So if you’re weak somewhere, and that person just left that was that was their strength, need to hire somebody that can actually be as strong or you need to learn and truly, like, learn that. So you can take it over?

Jeremy Weisz 35:30 

Yeah, talk about the importance of SOPs, operating procedures, because I know you’re thinking a lot about that now.

Shaheem Alam 35:38 

Yeah, yeah, very, very important. We did a company survey, like quarterly survey that we do with just across the company of anonymous, and give feedback. And we found that a lot of people like their biggest concern was like communication. So then we did another survey to figure out what do you guys all mean by communication? And it turned out, like people just didn’t know like, where their jobs started, and where it ended and someone else’s job started. Right? And also, like, what is expected of them? How do they know if they’re doing good or doing bad? None of that was formalized, like, it was kind of ones, but like, not really. So we did a lot of work this year on every single department, every single roll formalizing, you’re writing it down. So everyone understood what their job is. And then also the processes around that, too. I built out a lot of processes for our first couple services. But then the rest like it fell apart. So now I have Shane, who’s our Director of Client strategy, he’s working on putting a lot of that together and formalizing it and actually improving and giving it the attention that it needs. I think like, that’s the basics. Well, our advisor, Rick, what do you say, oh, he’s always says, be brilliant with the basics. So be brilliant with the basics. Like every business like as long as you’re brilliant with the basics, your business is going to be successful.

Jeremy Weisz 36:54 

Shaheem, I want to talk about a little bit more about exactly what you do. And I know you have a lot of people can check out, they have a page. That’s case studies, you can check that out. The one I want to talk about is overview. But I do want to mention there’s two episodes related to this that people can check out. I did one with Adi Klevit, who basically that’s what she does recommit. She actually goes in and documents processes, SOPs and systems for companies. So I love that one. We actually geeked out on our tech stack, but she really kind of breaks down how she thinks about SOPs. There’s another one with Owen McGab who is a co-founder, I think of SweetProcess, which is a software we actually use it to do actually document our SOPs. So people can check that episode out, I did with Owen as well, Overview. What did you do with the company Overview?

Shaheem Alam 37:56 

Yeah, Overview,, that’s the website. So we started working with them, when it was just directly with the founder, the CEO, we did LinkedIn outreach. So we like to use LinkedIn to generate leads did really, really well. We started closing deals, started making some revenue, raised another round of funding, and then got it they came to us, okay, like, they think it was, I remember was like, one of those like, clients may be thankful, but it’s very rare for them to say, like, hey, thank you for your work, like, thank you for what you like helped us achieve, it’s like, so rewarding to hear that. And so they were one of the clients that said that and then they expanded. So what happened was, we saw them go from us working with just the founder to now them hiring like three salespeople or four salespeople. So not only are we doing LinkedIn outreach for all the whole team now, but also the added-on cold calling as a service. And now we’re having callers, calling email like all three channels, basically. And we absolutely killed it. Like, we were booking like 50, 60 meetings a month. They closed a lot of deals from that, and how their contracts work because there’s like an initial, like, deal, but then it expands, like on one production line in a factory, and then expands to all its production lines in the factory, if that works out really well. So they’ve closed like, millions of dollars in business, just from like, the initial and the expansion with us. And so that was really great, because we saw that client and follow up from just a small startup just founders selling to a full sales operation, which is really cool.

Jeremy Weisz 39:35 

What are some mistakes you see people making with outreach on LinkedIn and email? Because obviously, what you did with Overview worked really well. So what are the things people should be doing and what are some mistakes people make?

Shaheem Alam 39:50 

Yeah, very common stuff is like sending essays like the messages are so long, and it’s all about them. Like hey, like, this is my company, this is my product, this is what we do blah, blah, blah, rather than actually just keeping it short and sweet and focusing on, like, what benefit are you actually delivering? Or what problem are you solving the art is in being able to deliver that message and like two or three sentences max, and make it relevant. Make it impactful. Like that’s the art. And so, yeah, literally on LinkedIn, if you’re reaching out to somebody, your message is longer than three message three lines are longer than four lines, like it’s way too long, you need to cut that down, and then focus on them. What are you going to do for them? I will say like, that’s like, the biggest thing that I’ve seen. Yeah.

Jeremy Weisz 40:40 

What are some ways that yeah, and you just met them? Or you don’t know them? What are some ways that you express how it’s gonna benefit them? Or what’s gonna benefit them? Or talking is gonna benefit them?

Shaheem Alam 40:53 

Like, just any service in general? Yeah. Yeah, well, really, like. So here, it’s like feature versus benefits, right? So for example, right? Do you care that your shoes are made out of like genuine leather? Or do you care that they’re comfortable to walk in? Or do you care that they look good, when you’re out and all dressed up? Right? So it’s like you’re selling, I guess, whatever the emotion is tied to is what you want to be talking about. And emotion is not tied to features. It’s tied to actual outcomes that people will experience. So read that and then also switch out your wheeze and eyes to use not like, hey, now we’ll help you do this. Instead, say you’ll achieve this. So just change the wheat to a you and rephrase her sentences.

Jeremy Weisz 41:44 

Love it. Yeah, first of all, I have one last question. Before I ask it, I want to point people to to learn more. My last question is mentors, mentors throughout your life, and I want to start with your dad and your dad’s influence on you.

Shaheem Alam 42:04 

I would say like so my dad and I, he worked really, really hard. We came from Pakistan, I was born in Pakistan came here when I was seven. And since the day we landed, I swear, like he worked like a lot. So first thing was I didn’t really see him as much. And so we weren’t really close. But what I think I really got from him was the work ethic, not just by like watching it, but I remember one time I was in like grade five or something. And I had a homework problem that I couldn’t solve. And I was like, I could really like couldn’t get it right. So I go up to him. He’s like working on the desk. Got to him and I was like, this is so hard. And he like, put his glasses down, like turn to me. And he’s like, nothing is hard. And then he proceeded to help me but like for some reason that sticks in my head like nothing is hard. And that’s how I kind of like if you just for my approval what I take is if you just work at it long enough work at it hard enough. Like you’ll get it you’ll solve it. And so that work ethic is what I really, I think got from my dad.

Jeremy Weisz 43:09 

I love it. Shaheem was the first one to thank you, everyone check out to learn more, and we’ll see everyone next time. Thanks.

Shaheem Alam 43:18 

Thank you Jeremy.