Season 3 / Episode #59 : Mike Moll
Guest, Mike Moll is the founder of Market Me, he helps creative a entrepreneurs charge with their worth.
Episode Website 💻 https://workathomerockstar.com/mike-moll
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[0:33] The Good Note – Story of Success
[3:31] The Bad Note – Story of Failure
[8:51] Assembling The Band
[15:01] Gathering Fans
[18:27] Instruments of Choice
[23:12] Guest Solo
Intro/Outro: Are you a work at home rock star, or do you dream of becoming one? Then you found the right podcast. Your host, Tim Melanson talks with successful work at home rock stars to learn their secrets and help you in your journey. Are you ready to rock? Here’s Tim?
Tim Melanson: Hello, and welcome to today’s episode of the work at home rockstar podcast. Excited for today’s guest. He’s a marketing coach and he helps creative a entrepreneurs charge with their worth. They’re excited to be talking to Mike Moll today. Hey Mike, are you ready to rock?
Mike Moll: I am absolutely ready to rock Tim.
Thanks for having me on. Awesome.
Tim Melanson: Perfect. We always start off with a good note. So tell me a story of success in your business that we can be inspired by.
Mike Moll: Sure. So I think. The, the biggest piece of that story comes from what I was doing before this business. Um, I was, I was not a great student in any level of education.
I finished high school, tried to go to college, did not work at all. Um, and so I kind of started working in jobs that I knew I could get. So I was in sales for a bit I worked for an insurance company for six years. And there was something about it that was just. Never right. I always felt like I was in the wrong place.
And I, I had this ongoing feeling of desperation that like, I don’t, I’m not worth getting out. I don’t have what it takes to get out. I don’t like who would hire me? What, what could I even do? Um, and I sat in that for years, years, and years and years. Um, I. I ended up having a panic attack in the parking lot of my office, which was very eyeopening experience.
I never had one before. Never had one since, but that morning was the morning that that had happened. And I had this epiphany during that process that I would never work in a corporate office again. so I quit my job. Not in the smart way in the, I have no backup plan. I quit way. Um, went on to try a bunch of new things, tried to create an app, uh, landed, landed as a marketing agency.
Not quite sure how I got there. It was this weird sequence of events that brought me there, but it turned out to be the thing that I am very good at. And, and that is very, obvious to me. So I think the biggest thing outside of the business success is just. Finding that out when I did, cause I, I saw this version of my life, where I was like potentially 20, 25 years later, like in a bad relationship with, you know, just all the things that could happen if you don’t, if you’re not doing what you should be doing with your time and energy and your passion.
And so that that’s my biggest win was moving into, um, being an entrepreneur that way.
Tim Melanson: Wow. And that’s a great story because I think that, I mean, It it’s, it’s tough because we, we, we’re sort of taught to have this security blanket of like, you know, no, no, no, no, no, go get that secure job, you know, don’t quit your job.
You don’t have to have a backup plan if you’re gonna do that, you know, all that kind of stuff. And you know, it, it is very inspiring to hear people just quit, you know, and the world didn’t end, you know, it ended up, you found what you were supposed to be at. And if you hadn’t quit that at that point, you know, where would you be right now?
Who, who knows? Right.
Mike Moll: Not, not living a dream life in Mexico. that’s for sure. I don’t think maybe I don’t know who knows, but I have this like, I’m so incredibly grateful for where I’m at and what I get to like how I get to spend my time and energy now. It’s amazing. I, that was the best decision I’ve ever made.
Tim Melanson: Yeah, right on. So now, okay. Along that path, we’re gonna have some bad notes as well. Some things that aren’t gonna go very well. And I mean, you know, especially in a circumstance like yours, I mean, where you didn’t even have a backup plan, I’m I’m sure not everything went as planned. right. So I’m wondering, you know, is there anything that was just really, really sour that just didn’t work very well.
And how did you recover from it and how can we avoid it?
Mike Moll: Sure. Um, I think the biggest one is I, I took on a project. I did it out of fear and being in a scarcity mindset at the time. Um, Partially because I didn’t know what to charge myself at the time I was early on in the business. Um, I could get a bunch of people to say yes at 500 bucks a month, but someone would say yes at 5,000 let alone 15.
I was like, there’s no, I’m not that guy. Right. And, and not having the background in it or the education. I had a lot of these doubts in the early stages of my business. Um, I got offered a crazy contract, knew it was gonna be a lot of work, but I just saw the price tag and I thought, okay, This is it, this is how we’re gonna level up.
This is the next, the evolution of it. Um, turned out. I almost went bankrupt doing it. Um, I had to bring on so many resources and I had to bring on like so much a time and attention and bandwidth to something that wasn’t mine, that I wasn’t passionate about. And, uh, it almost, it almost put us outta business.
I, um, the worst day of my business life is I had to fire three employees. Um, All, all I did all that I could to not cry on the phone. Like I was devastated that I was letting these people down, that I was cutting their leg up from under them in the way that I wa I just, but I, I couldn’t do anything about it cuz I was trapped in this thing.
And, and soon after I, I pivoted and like I ran, ran from the Hills for the Hills, for the Hills, I’m learning Spanish. So the, a lot of times my language is going back and forth. Yeah. Um, But, uh, yeah. And just like the, the idea of like looking at the bank account and saying, oh boy, I don’t know how these five people are getting paid.
Like at that time we actually have to let them go. Um, and it, it almost led me to give up it really like, I, I, I sat with it for a while and like, it was really hard to get out from under and feeling just like a failure and, and all these components of it. That was, it was really challenging. Um, but. I would say that, well,
Tim Melanson: I, I think that’s a, that’s a really good one, cuz I, I find that a lot of us end up in that situation where you end up, like you said a scarcity mindset, right.
You’re you’re sort of looking at this giant project coming in and going, wow. You know, that’s, that’s gonna be a lot of money. Maybe it’s not my strong suit, but I’ll figure it out. And, and yeah, I, I think like I would like to get your, your impression on it though. Like. You know, I’ve had probably just as many stories about people saying yes to something, and then it ended up working out well, as I’ve had about people saying yes to something and it being totally wrong.
So I’m wondering like, can you look back and see what it was that made this one? Not a good move as opposed to a good move.
Mike Moll: Lack of self-awareness at the time I. If I had spent the time and really had like the depth of knowledge about, okay, these are the things I’m terrible at. These are the things I’m great at.
I will only do things that I am great at. If I had been more observant of that at the time and actually deployed it. Um, I never would’ve taken on the project that I took on. And I, as a, you know, as an entrepreneur, you have a level of cockiness because everything rides on your decision. Crashes and burns.
It’s your fault goes to the moon, your victory. So you have this it’s, it, it, some people take it too far and it becomes ego in a bad way, but there has to be ego. You have to take responsibility for decisions, so you have to feel strongly about them. Um, and at the time I wasn’t making strong decisions based on what I knew had to do well.
And so I think it was a lack of self awareness at that time that created the friction and had, I just spent even, even an extra hour, you. Map out the pros and cons. Think about how I wanna spend my day, all that stuff. I thought about none of it. I saw money. And I, I, I went for it cause I was cocky and I said, we can, we’ll figure it out.
No problem. And we did. And we could, but at the, the detriment of like my mental health, bringing on contractors and trying to manage stuff, I had no idea how to manage. Like it was a nightmare. Um, Self awareness.
Tim Melanson: Love it. Yeah.
Okay. That’s that’s huge. so, so I mean, you know, number one would be, you know, if it’s something, if this big contract is something that is, is huge, but it is within your wheelhouse, then it would probably be a good move.
But if it’s not even in your wheelhouse, well, then, you know, I think that’s the issue you ended up having to go out and hire people. Who could get this done, but of course those people are probably expensive. right. Yeah. And, uh, and that’s what ended up happening. Okay. Wow. Okay. Very, very good. Start to this interview for sure.
um, no. So speaking of which though, I mean, you know, getting a band, you know, finding people to work with, you know, that can be a challenge and you, you experienced it. Uh, I’m wondering, do you have any tips and strategies on how to put yourself around the right people?
Mike Moll: Yeah. So there there’s two sides of it.
I mean, I’m a big virtual assistant. Find someone who’s in, who has a specialty to cover that task. Um, sorry to anybody that like prefers the employee method, but I don’t think employees are a good thing unless you have the scale of work required of the exact same thing for person to do. But even in graphic design, even in running advertising campaigns, like the different types of campaigns that you run, there’s different strategies, there’s different language that’s talked about in the marketplace in design there’s different styles.
And like one person who could do every different style is bull. Like it’s not, it’s not a real thing. So I think finding the talent who specializes in the thing. And have them execute versus saying, great, we’re gonna have, you know, these full-time people and they’re gonna do now you pay a little bit more to do that, but the job gets done right.
Quicker, project management and back and forth is less, and that is a savings in itself. So I think finding special, like hyper specialized people that are excellent, the thing you need done is really a good idea. Um, but I think you, you still need to have an internal process and cadence to how things need to be done.
So for example, like we have, uh, standard operating procedures for eblast for setting up a Google ad campaign. Like what, what are all those steps? Right. We need to have a call with the client. We need to ask them these 20 things. Right. Once we know that we need to go do the research, we need to compile the research here.
We need to write ads. See if they align with how our customer talks about their product, and then we gotta get access to the, the website, Google analytics, Google tag manager, creating that account that like there’s, there’s all these steps. But the problem is if you don’t have a process, if you don’t have a procedure for it, and especially on the creative side, if you don’t have a guideline, a creative brief, a brand guideline, some, one thing to put them in the right direction.
Examples of stuff you like, that’s it. But if you don’t have that, um, you’re, you’re letting people’s. Previous experience number one, and the way that they think work should be done, which is typically a bad habit for how you need it done. If you don’t set those parameters and those boundaries and have those processes, uh, it can be a real problem.
And I hired a ton of people early on, and I just kept saying, why do these people suck? Why can’t they just deliver like anywhere close to what I want on draft one, what’s going on with this? And, and about seven months and like 10, 15 contractors later, I was like, oh boy, This is my fault. And so we, we did, I went through, I had somebody, I had somebody watch me work on zoom.
How, how would you do this? And I would talk through the process. First I go to this website, then I search for this. The way I search it this way is because, and I had someone watching me just taking notes on like, cuz my interpretation of how the work gets done is different. So it’s gotta be someone that doesn’t know how to do it so they can ask the right questions.
To, to make that process stronger. So what I’ll sometimes do is I’ll voice dictate step by step, and then I’ll have them do the step by step and I’ll watch and be like, no, why did you do that? You said, well, this is what you said in the step. Oh, crap. so you can do it that way. And then you, you refine the process or you just have somebody watch you do it.
Um, that that’s been a really, really good way because then they stop you. Hey, why did you. X Y Z, Hey, what’s the point of that? What is this tool like? What is the purpose of this tool? And there are questions that you don’t think about, cause you already know. And when you already know for you to explain it, you’re gonna miss steps, cuz things are obvious to you and we skip the obvious, right?
We go into the granular detailed stuff, which is not what people need to actually learn a process. So love it. Yeah.
Tim Melanson: Uh, I, I agree with everything. I mean, especially cuz I, you know, I work in the graphic design, web development spectrum I guess area. And we, I find that, uh, you know, cuz we would consider ourselves sort of the expert in that area and we like to find entrepreneurs that want to, to leverage that expertise.
So I think that. You know, if you are the type that wants to be in control of everything. Well, then that might not be the direction you want to go in. Maybe you might wanna get a, an, you know, an employee because you know, you could have unlimited revisions right. Cause you know, they’re your employee. But if you’re gonna be hiring an expert, I mean, the, the advantages to that are, are huge, obviously, because, you know, they’re, they’re more, they can get things done on their own, you know, rather than having to handhold them through everything.
Uh, but I, but on the, that other side, you know, For, for certain processes in your business. I love what you just did there, where you’ll actually get on a zoom call and you’ll, you know, talk to someone that doesn’t know anything about what you’re doing and, and make sure that they understand exactly what you’re doing, uh, because that can be helpful.
Even in the case of hiring an expert, cuz they’ll like, get, get to understand what you’re doing. They can actually start to give you feedback now and say, oh, you did it that way. I see why you did it that way. However here you could do it this way, too. right. Hey stars is Tim here. That’s really, really cool this episode.
And if you are, feel free to leave us a review while I’ve got you here, I want to tell you about my business. Creative crew agency is a OneStop shop for your online business. We provide graphic design websites, ongoing support hosting, and so much more. If you’re looking for a shiny new website or you need some technical help with your current platform, feel free to visit creative crew agency.com and book time to talk now, back to.
Now, so you know, you, you’ve got your, your, your band. You’ve got your team. Everything’s, everything’s going well, you’ve got your product figured out, but now how do you go out there and get eyeballs on it? How do you find fans?
Mike Moll: Yeah, that’s a great question. I’m gonna give you the counterintuitive answer because I, the people I work with are, are not the type of people that, and Facebook ads are the number one answer.
And not to say that they’re bad. I’ve built an entire business for the past eight years on the back of Google and Facebook ads. I’ve never used them for myself. Which is kind of a funny thing. Um, but I have, you know, when we’re talking about, you know, roofing companies and, um, dentists, like most people don’t care who they go to, they just need that thing.
So those things work well, but if you offer a higher ticket service where the person needs to feel comfortable with you and they need to believe in, have to align from a value standpoint before they buy in, you can’t do that. With a Google ad, you can drive people to the site with a Google ad and hopefully your content tells ’em the story.
But for me, and the way that I teach my clients is by using a cold video outreach. So the way that works is you identify the exact people that you wanna work with. So my most recent client, she does, um, SEO for cannabis company. So she wants to talk to growers, distributors, any anyone in the cannabis space.
Um, and so what we do is we connect with them all on LinkedIn. And then we record a custom video for each single person. Hey Tim, it’s Mike, blah, blah, blah. Here’s the spiel. It’s about a 40 second to a minute and 20 second video. Um, and we’re doing like the labor of video outreach. Um, the disadvantages scaling is not possible.
You gotta just record them. Yep. But, but the experience that we had, actually, I had it as a, a lead magnet and it was like a mini course, 20 minute course on how to do this. Right. And so that’s how I got this client. She downloaded it. And my second email was like, Hey, like let me know how it’s going. She emailed me.
She goes, Hey, I sent seven videos and booked two sales calls. Is that good? I’m like, yeah, that’s good. You’re good. That’s fine. Um, and then we started working together on the back of that, but imagine, think about, you know, you, you’ve got, you’ve got or business, you’ve got your website, you’ve got your social profiles.
How much junk. Flies into your inbox. And LinkedIn is a sess pool I hate going on LinkedIn now. Um, but like email marketing from every different country in the world that wants a private label sell U SEO, bring new leads for $99 a month. Like. They’re doing that at scale, I get 40 of them a month, at least it’s crazy.
Um, but there’s something undeniable about someone getting a message on LinkedIn or on another platform and they open the message and it’s your face waving at them with a play button. You’re gonna click that button. You’re gonna see what that person has to say. And, and having it be addressing the person, I’ve had responses of people like, Hey, I don’t need this, but like, That’s crazy that you sent me this.
No one has ever done that before. Um, and it works for anything. If you know who your ideal client is like, that, that to me, that’s how to reach them. Yeah.
Tim Melanson: It’s putting in the work too, cuz I mean it is work to do that and I think that’s what would hold a lot of people back from doing it. And I mean, that’s the kind of that I like to look for.
I mean, if it’s something that. Not everybody’s gonna be willing to do, then you’re gonna have an edge
Mike Moll: mm-hmm
Tim Melanson: right on. Yeah. I love that. That’s really cool. So, uh, now what about the instruments? What about, what about the like, is this, this is one of the instruments I assume. right.
Mike Moll: Yeah, absolutely. What other tools
Tim Melanson: do you use in your business to get success?
Mike Moll: All of them. And what I mean by that is I test. Everything. So I will demo every software. So there’s a website called alternative two dot net you just search on Google alternative to software. Essentially what it does is you say, okay, this is the tool I have. And then it’s a crowdsourced list of alternatives to that thing.
So HubSpot and I like the CRM and the email marketing element. Great. Here’s 30 different options that are out there that, that you can actually take a look at. So I just go through ’em all. I test them. I try them. I see what plays well together. I use probably 10 tools in total to do everything. So I use, um, lead pages for landing pages.
It’s like fast and crazy good, but it doesn’t do email. So that goes in active campaign to do my emails. Um, and then I use, um, I’m in the process of switching to get response, which now does those together, um, air tables, amazing air tables, like a, a, it’s kind of like an Excel sheet, but it actually works as a database and you can put like images and links.
And so I use it as like my sales CRM. I use it for, um, keeping track of my outreach, keeping track of my content. Um, Uh, even little tools like crisp it. I don’t know if you, I, I, as I’m speaking to you here in Mexico, there was a vendor that went by with a, like, basically a, a siren pointing out of his car with his message on repeat.
I don’t know if that audio came through, but if it didn’t it’s cuz crisp is taking outside audio and, and condensing it and only listening to my voice and sending it through. Oh, wow. But I think, uh, I think so. I think my, my answer is really like. Experiment. There’s so much SAS, so subscription, uh, subscription as a service.
So like you pay every month and you get access to the tool, everything that you’re doing in your business manually, you can probably get rid of 50% by using tools. whether it’s a, you know, calendly linking to zoom, you know, your booking, your booking thing, which creates a zoom meeting that pings everybody’s calendar.
Like that’s a beautiful thing. That’s emails back and forth eliminated that’s phone call that’s. Hey, when are we gonna do it? How am I gonna get in touch with you? Right. You just send a link, shows your availability, you click it. Everyone gets a zoom link. We’re done like that. That alone is probably 10 hours a month.
Booking meetings back and forth like tho those lit and then you pay what, a hundred dollars a year for it to save a lot of savings, you know? So I think it’s just for me, it’s thinking about the processes and the things that you do over and over and over and over again that have a low value to the impact of your business.
I call them $1 task, so they need to get done, but they don’t have any improvement on like the visibility of your business or your revenue in any capacity. Um, find people and tools to take those off your plate, cuz there’s a lot of tools that exist that can do most of this work you’re talking about.
Tim Melanson: Yeah, I agree. And I think, I think some people might have a, a hard time getting rid of those tasks cuz they are the checklist tasks that you’re just like, okay, I’m busy, I’m doing stuff , you know? Right. But you’re, you’re a hundred percent cent, right. I mean, if, if you can, if you can save, you know, the time, then you can use that time in another area of your business to grow it.
Mike Moll: Yeah. Yeah, and I, there’s an exercise that I do that I highly recommend. I’ll explain it super quick. So go through the last 30 days of your business and write down in as granular as you can get everything you’ve done in the last month. I checked my email twice a day. I responded to emails, took this amount of time.
I sent invoices, I followed up with invoices. I booked this calendar meeting for this per, like all this stuff. And then make four columns, $1, $10, a hundred dollars, a thousand dollars, and take each task and put them in to the column that represents the value of it to your business growth. And what you’ll find is 80% will be $1.
7% will be sorry, 15, so 80%, 15%. And so you’re okay now, 95% of your time and energy and tasks and, and everything that you’re doing is bucketed into stuff that doesn’t move your business forward. There’s 5% of those things, and it’s usually 1% is your a thousand dollars an hour task. That if I was just doing that day, we would blow up and then figure out how to get rid of all the other crap.
Tim Melanson: Love Mike right on. Well, then I am very excited for your guest solo so tell me what’s exciting in your business.
Mike Moll: Um, so I, so I’ve, I’ve had this marketing agency, it’s been this beautiful remote thing. That’s taken, you know, eight years of, of freedom from the corporate world. Uh, but last year I started offering coaching, marketing, coaching to some people that I knew just direct.
Friends and I found this massive passion for it. I never expected to be doing it. I, coaching was never, even in my was never on my radar. Um, but COVID kind of shifted how people were doing things and just the conversation started happening. And now I’m like, I I’m in love with it. So, um, that, that’s kind of what I offer.
But, um, if you, if you found the. Uh, if you found the, uh, idea of doing the video outreach, fascinating. And that’s something that you wanna give it a try, um, you can find it as a free mini course. It’s I think the whole thing is like 26 minutes. So it’s like super concise, no fluff. It’s like, really just like, how do I do this now?
How do I, how do I send a video message today and get at moving on it? Um, and that can be found at go.mikemoll.co. And it’s a, it’s a download, it’s a three step video and it’s super, super concise. It’s like, I think it’s like 27 minutes in total. It
Tim Melanson: check that out. Love it. Go dot Mike mall.com and that’s M O L l.com dot.co.
Mike Moll: Coco. Yeah, couldn’t get the.com. There’s a handsome, there’s a handsome Mike Moll that lives in Vancouver, Canada. That will not gimme the do com I’ve tried.
Tim Melanson: Oh, well, and I mean, I suppose the.ca is, is not useful for you anymore either. Now that you’re in Mexico.
Mike Moll: Yeah. I, I don’t, I don’t, I don’t know that I’ll be moving back to Canada ever.
I’m probably gonna be floating around like south America for the next, at least 10 years
Tim Melanson: also. Very inspiring. That’s great. so right on. Thank you so much for rocking out with me today, Mike, this has been a lot of fun.
Mike Moll: Thank you for having me, Tim. Cool
Tim Melanson: to the listeners. Make sure you subscribe right in comment.
We, you next time on the work at home rockstar podcast.
Intro/Outro: Thanks for listening to learn how you can become a work at home rockstar, or become a better one, head on over to workathomerockstar.com today.