Marquel Russell is the first client who trusted me with his business when I started CoachingSales dot com. He's still with us today. Together we've taken his business from 6 figures to multiple 7 figures a year.
Marquel is the founder of ClientAttractionUniversity dot com. He and his team help coaches and consultants build automated client attraction systems.
- What rappers and media buyers have in common [10:24]
- How to know whether you're using the right messaging with your market – and how to fix it if you aren't [16:08]
- How Marquel's first successful sales rep revealed a major flaw in his messaging – despite closing deals left and right [30:52]
- Identifying and removing the bottlenecks that stop you from finally crossing the threshold to a 7-figure run rate [35:06]
- How long it takes some entrepreneurs to recognize their ego and identity are holding back the growth of their business [41:09]
…And much more!
Mike Mark: [00:00:00]
What is up everyone in Seven Figure Agency Owners and High Ticket Coaches. So today's guest, I got Marquel Russell with us. So Marquel is a legend in the client acquisition arena. And I mean, like for us, one of our favorite values is really just results, results, results, especially for client results.
And Marquel, it has made it a point to almost become obnoxious with this client result, where he just gets so much results and puts it out there so consistently. I love seeing it and it's cool to me cause you know, you take people who literally know, basically next to nothing. I mean, a lot of them actually know nothing about advertising.
They hardly even notice pixel is sometimes by the time they come to you and in such a short amount of time, they get set up and then they get such crazy results. So this has been a conversation I've been looking forward to having with you and, kind of breaking down your ad strategy for the audience and then why it works so well in comparison to a lot of the other stuff that's taught out there.
Marquel Russell: [00:01:07]
Mike Mark: [00:01:07]
And then, really also hearing like your process to where, like, I think that you have the ideal scenario right now in your business where, I mean, you do what you like to do in the business. You don't really have to do the stuff that you don't like to do that much. You get to basically clock out at 3:00 PM every day and then go hang out with the kids.
And I mean, you got six kids, right? It's six now, or is it seven with Ryan?
Marquel Russell: [00:01:36]
Seven man. I'm losing second hand bro.
Mike Mark: [00:01:38]
Seven? Hey, hey, when you get to the second hand, that's when you're…
Marquel Russell: [00:01:43]
Yeah, started losing count.
Mike Mark: [00:01:45]
You got seven kids and then you're able to though take your time off in the afternoon, like be really present dad, be like the kind of dad that it's like, you take time to show them how to build business as play basketball, pursue whatever their dreams are, learn and all that. And like, I think that a lot of people, you know, especially in our audience have the belief that there's, you ha, you have an either or.
Marquel Russell: [00:02:10]
Mike Mark: [00:02:10]
Right? And like, you have been a really cool example of seeing like how you scaled your business to where it really matches your lifestyle. And you get to do the parts that you like. You don't have to do the parts that you don't like so much. And then also you get to do what's important to you and like spend time with the people that are important to you. So, I think you've got a unique design and, and I'm excited for you to break down some of your thought processes there, but, yeah, man.
So, I guess the first question I have for you is just in general, like, how did you get into advertising and what has been the process there?
Marquel Russell: [00:02:45]
So, yeah, so I got introduced to advertising. It's been pretty crazy, man. So, I, a few years ago, I didn't even know this whole world existed, right? So I was, I actually used to do club promotions and artists management.
Obviously, both of us, we love music. We love hip hop, right? So, I used to manage some artists, and we started to pick up a nice bit of steam. And while hanging out in the club one night, cause I was kind of in the streets during the day, doing club promotions and artist management during the night, kind of doing a little bit of both.
Right? And it was kind of exhausted. So, I'm hanging in the club one night and a guy walks up to me and he says, hey man, he thought I was somebody else. I knew his face. He knew my face, but he was like, hey man, who do you? He was like, who do you know that has a cell phone? And I'm like, well, everybody I know has a cell phone.
And he was like, what if every time they paid their bill, you got paid. And I was like, well, that'd be pretty cool cause everybody has a cell phone. And he was like long story short. I'm working with it, technology company, we're expanding in the area. One of my mentors would be in town this week. And we're looking for somebody to leads who want to make some money.
So, I'm like, alright, cool. A legitimate millionaire. Cause I was used to being around people who made money, right? But he was like a legitimate millionaire to do something legit. So I'm like all right, cool. So I went to this home meeting, and we were pulled up to the house. The house is nice. It's nice cars outside. So, everything was like lined up so far.
So, cause I'm, I'm from Atlanta. So, it was like everybody claims they have money in Atlanta. So, I'm always skeptical and look in and I'm like, all right, let me see if this stuff is matching up. So, I go in. They started doing the presentations. And it was telling me about video technology.
And here's how big video technology is about to be video technology and voice technology, right? And it was like, you get the opportunity to be on the front end of this thing. And it was like, imagine being in the room with Facebook and Google first started like this, what would, this is where you're sitting right now.
So, I'm like, Oh my God, this is amazing. So, it was 500 bucks to get started. I was like, Oh man, they told me all I had to do is get two people in and they'll get two people and they'll get two people and they'll get two people and they'll get two people. And before I knew it, I'd be traveling the world, sipping pina coladas on the beaches, wearing expensive suits, driving cars the company paid for the whole nine yards.
Right? So, I'm like, I'm in, I'm like 500 bucks. That's all. I mean, we blow that in the club and I'm totally in. So I jumped on board. I started telling all my people about it. Cause I knew a ton of people. Everbody telling me it was a pyramid scheme. I had gotten tricked. I'm like, really? I'm like, y'all been knew about this stuff and nobody ever told me.
Right? So, my mom saw it and my mom was always a hustler, right? So, I was like, if there's any craziness in this, she's going to know. So, I showed it to her and she was like, well, if you put some effort into it, this could actually work. So, I'm like, alright, cool. But long story short, everybody told me I was crazy. I was about to quit to be honest with you, because I had went through a lot of people, people who I looked up to telling me it was a bad idea.
So, I was kinda like, yeah, but these guys were still hitting me up trying to like help me and where I'm from nobody wants to help you make money. So, I'm like, alright, let me hear these guys out. So, they invited me to a conference that it was happening in Atlanta, just so happened. I went to the conference and it was like thousands and thousands of people there are making tons of money.
Excited, where you know what I'm saying? They made tons of money. Nice suits. Just doing their thing. At this time, I never flew in an airplane. I had never really out on traveling out of Atlanta was really, yeah they didn't own a suit. None of that. So, I'm at the event and like a polo, some cargo shorts and like some Airmax, with my Cartier frames, you know what I'm saying. And all these people got on three-piece suits and, you know, tailored suits in the whole night.
So, I'm like, I felt out of place, but I'm like, all right, it made me something to this. So I came out of the event just out of total excitement. I ended up signing up a few people. So I hit a couple of ranks in the company. And then, I ran out of people to talk to, they told me to talk to people with who, with income, who come within three feet of you, you do home and hotel parties, posts on social media.
They weren't really teaching social media because they want to do everything that was dup duplicatable. So, but me, I'm like more naturally on a more introverted side. So I don't really talk to people who, I don't know like that. So me walking up to people in the mall, pitching them on opportunity is totally outside of my natural personality and immediate invited people to my home to do presentations, it just wasn't in my DNA cause where I grew up, you don't bring people to your home and the people I grew up around, I'm not going to invite them to other people's homes as well cause that could go bad. So, somebody on my team sent me a link one day and was like, Hey, we don't really got to do home and hotel parties.
Here's this link and I clicked on the link. It was a four part video series. Let's say here's how you attract people to you. It was my, it was magnetic sponsoring by Mike Dillard and it was basically like, here's four videos that shows you how to magnetically attract distributors to you like you don't have to do home parties. You don't have to do home meetings. You don't have to talk to strangers.
I'm like, okay, this guy is speaking my language. This is my first introduction to online marketing period. So, I'm watching, I watched the four part video series and he starts talking about direct response marketing, but for network marketers, but he called it magnetic spot where he got it on attraction marketing.
He didn't call it a direct response to it, right? So, I'm like, okay, cool. So, I watched the videos. And at the end, he saw a 40 or $40 ebook. And I'm reading a sales letter, written sales letter probably about 50 times. This is my first online purchase ever. I read it. I finally was like, you know, what, what the heck. I bought it.
And at the end of it, at the end of the book, he says, you can sell it to other network marketers, right? Because other network marketers are struggling too. So, you can be an affiliate, sell it to other people. So that was my main, my first $20 commission online. But this was my first introduction to doing, to doing marketing in a way like that, where you're not just kind of going at people, but it's more attractive.
You putting out value. You giving people a call to action, direct response, and then you lead them to that path. And that's really what got me into this whole thing. And at that moment, I was like, alright, cool. I took that and started teaching other network marketers, how to get leads for their business and start growing.
And I started to build this brand and I was still in network marketing at the time. And, I got the last company I was in. I became the number one recruiter in that company out of 50,000 people. And I did it solely just recruiting on social on Facebook and was teaching other people that stuff. And as I was looking at the numbers, I'm like, all right, I'm the number one recruiting in this company, but the numbers don't make sense.
And I'm working with way too hard. I was like, I wonder if I just took what I was doing and just kind of stepped out and started doing my own thing and teaching people what I knew. I can make money. I could hit my goals way faster and that's what we do. I just kind of cut ties in network marketing and said, you know, we're going to focus just on that own thing.
And one thing we got really, really good at is generating tons and tons of leads and actually converting those leads into actual paying clients who was like, well, this is what we're going to plant our flag and just go all in on this.
Mike Mark: [00:09:33]
So, I guess how did you get to the point where you, cause I mean, I'm sure like everybody it's like, almost like when you first start rapping, right? Like you, anyone who starts rapping they're imitating everybody, then surely they like lose the imitation and then it becomes themselves and their own style and their own format of it. So I guess how, what was that process? Like who were the people that you were imitating? And then what was the evolution into your current style where you've defined sort of your advertising strategies as they are unique to you?
Marquel Russell: [00:10:03]
So I think, I think early on it was obviously it was Mike Dillard cause he was the first person I ever, saw doing this stuff. And of course, you know, man, come on, I'm always a person who I'm like, all right. If they mentioned somebody else, if they say, well, my mentor is such and such, I'm the type of guy who's going to go check out that guy.
Mike Mark: [00:10:21]
Marquel Russell: [00:10:21]
Going through their rabbit hole. And now they mentioned this book. Now their mentor mentioned this book, so I'm going down that rabbit hole. So I would say the first person was Mike Dillard cause he was the first exposure. And then from there that led me into like being introduced to guys like Vince Reed, Mark Hoverson who passed, last year.
And I just kind of was in that web, but everybody obviously in that world, it was like everybody had their own style. Everybody moved a little bit differently. So I started trying to, thinking I had to do stuff a certain way and I came out of the network marketing world. So in my video, sometimes I to have, I have like a, a shirt with like my tie on, and then, you know, just a button down shirt or whatever thinking I had to do stuff a certain way.
And I started realizing that, hey, people really just want me to show up, 100% like me. I don't have to do it a certain type of way in terms of like speaking in a certain type of way or teaching them a certain type of way. If I just show up 100% of me and share my story and one guy who I really, who helped me with that was my guy, Cedric Harris.
And he was like, man, share your story because like, people really want to know the story. And the more I started sharing my story, not just the surface level stuff, but like really going deep and being vulnerable. I think that's what it was the thing that it really helped me begin to stand out.
Mike Mark: [00:11:35]
That's cool. And then, so like, advertising wise, what are you doing when, when someone comes to you like, and they don't have their stuff at all. Cause I mean, the thing that baffles me is how you take people that like really have no idea about advertising hardly at all. You know what I mean? They really are good at what they do.
They have some sort of an offer typically structured, but then when it comes to like Facebook ads manager, I mean, it's like, you know, it's like, they're really trying to re Greek to them, and then you are able to walk them through it, to where in like such a short amount of time, they're able to get like crazy results.
So what about like when you've distilled it down to its like essence, what are you having them build and sort of what's that process look like?
Marquel Russell: [00:12:26]
Got it. So the biggest thing, so one of my gifts is like taking complicated concepts and like breaking it down to really simple things that people can easily understand.
So I just kind of demystified it cause a lot of people see this thing as it's big monster, is big advertising monster, but when you break it down, it's really only a couple of components. And the main thing we focus on is the messaging. So most people come to us and they're like, they think, and they have an advertising issue.
Well, they got a Facebook at issue or Facebook ads don't work or whatever the case may be. But what we've found is the number one thing we see is that they have a messaging issue. So once we get the messaging, right. And we flush all that out and now we get to the copy. Now, the message and stuff just pours into the other thing.
So now we take that message in. Now we create it and now we take that. And now you, cause in terms of like setting up ads manager, I mean it's pretty simple. You can learn how to do that anywhere, but it's really like, how do you take this messaging? Now, how do you, you know, put that into your ad copy once they click on that, because your messaging is on point, how you, how did that, how does that now resonate with them and speak directly them? And then how do you continue to, they get them to send you to go through the process.
And it's really about having that messaging really doubt and doubt in. And I think 99% of the people who come to us. Their messaging is on point. So it was once we fix that, that's our first pillar. And then once we get that first pillar tight, now it's like, all right, what happens once they click?
Like what do they see? What do they hear? What's going to come appeal him to move to the next step? And now we get that tight and it's again, it's just bore down to the messaging. And then that third phase, like how do we get them there? And it's all congruent because obviously once they get to their enrollment call, what's being said on the call has to still be in alignment with what was said on the first thing.
So essentially we just break the whole thing down. So it's the messaging. Now we take that messaging, that messaging becomes your ad copy. That messaging also becomes your lead magnet. And then that messaging also becomes part of your offer and then the enrollment process. And in terms of your funnel, it's just breaking it down.
Cause a lot of people come to us and they've been, they've been sold on this idea of having these extremely complicated funnels. Like you gotta have enough sale, you gotta have a downsale, you gotta have this, you gotta have that. When we're like, hey, you really only require this four page funnel.
Now in theory is really simple, right? Because it's only four or five pages. However you want to have the right messaging on these pages to make them work. And then we just show them how to do this thing, the opposite way. Cause a lot of times online is like, it's kind of like the opposite of worry by the seasons. So, it's like, hey, you gotta sell a low ticket offer.
And then you upsell them from $7 to $97. You send them from 97 to 297, 297 to 497. And then later on you sell them your high ticket, but then we show them and we help them believe that you can actually start with the hot ticket offer because that's what really people really want. That's the thing that's really going to give them the solution. You start there and then your messaging is going to help, you know, sell all that. That makes sense?
Mike Mark: [00:15:32]
Yep. And so, I guess my question for you is how do you know the messaging's proven? Like what tells you that the messaging has been proven.
Marquel Russell: [00:15:41]
So basically, so a lot of times when they come to us, the messaging isn't proven like immediately, it isn't improving that point, right? But I think Facebook ads is like a fast way to get it proven because it's like people aren't responding, you know, it's not resonating. If they're not responding the rate and the metrics, which we want them to respond, we know what's not working.
And it's kinda like Tim Ferriss did the same thing with a four hour, four hour work week, right? He was like, well, I want to, it's going to be four hours. You, it, it's going to be this other title. Let's run some ads to this thing and to see which one gets the most clicks. Four hour, we just happened to get the most clicks. So he ran with that.
So it's the same thing we would say, come launched this thing with a small budget to see what happens. If the metrics meet, where we want it to meet, now great. We're going to keep running this thing. We're going to add gasoline on it. If not, let's kill it and then let's go to the drawing board and make whatever necessary tweaks.
But the biggest thing is like, we focus heavy on like the basic stuff, right? It's the outcome. Let's focus on the outcome and like, getting away from like the industry jargon, because a lot of times we can get so sucked into like our industry jargon and the people we're speaking to typically don't know what that means.
And it creates a disconnect. So that's why people aren't clicking the ads people aren't opting in. They're not going through the whole process because they're confused and it's not speaking directly to their pain directly to their desires and so forth.
Mike Mark: [00:16:59]
It's interesting cause I mean, like, I want to dive deep into this part specifically. And like, I have some pushback where like, for me, what I've noticed is that whenever I focus on the big promise and the outcome, I get everybody under the sun. And then I actually sometimes will use the industry jargon to make sure that I'm only calling out the people that know what I'm talking about and are in the right spot.
And like, sometimes one of the situations that happens a lot of the times for us and you know, like it happened to me and then it happens a lot to other people is we we're proving our messaging and all our metrics we're saying that we're accurate. But then the conversions just weren't coming across the line.
And it is because like, we kept, the messaging was working, but it wasn't working if you know what I mean, right? Like, so how do you protect against that or prevent against that? Or like, at what level is it right to bring in jargon to repel people? Cause I know sometimes like, the other part of attraction marketing is the repellent side where you need to make sure you're not getting everybody who's not prepared.
Cause like, like I'll give you an example, right? My parents had some lots in, in Florida that they're trying to sell and they were talking to me about it. And like, you know, hey, we want to run some ads and we want to get ads to people in Michigan to get them, to come buy the lots here. And I was like, okay, cool.
Well, I'm like trying to think about all the different angles and like, you know, the, the, the obvious angles or stuff, like, you know, like who wants to retire in Florida or who wants to, who wants to retire in a dream home in Florida, right? That's kind of like, or who else wants a dream home like this in Florida?
You know, like, I'm just saying kind of thinking like basic advertising headlines that I know are proven at work and, But then my fear was, you know, initially I'm like, Oh, well, if I get that, I'm going to get like the guy who's in the trailer park in Detroit that has no chance of potentially ever retiring in Florida, but then like comments on the ad because it's a beautiful picture.
And you know, those people, when you start running ads, like, hey, come out of the woodwork. Oh my God. So, you know, I was starting to think through the messaging and maybe like starting at 350K, your dream home in Florida awaits or your Florida dream home awaits, right? Like something like that. So now I put the price out to repel, anyone who would be afraid of 350K.
So I guess like for you, how do you find that sweet spot? How do you protect against bringing people in who aren't going to be as qualified as you might otherwise want with and your metrics read, like they're going good but then when it comes down to the dollars and cents, it's not, you see what I mean? Does that make sense?
Marquel Russell: [00:19:35]
One hundred percent. So like you said, so at, so, depending on the level you would tie. So like for us, we are advertising, we definitely tie in some of the industries are against us because we're looking for a specific type of person and then some individual, especially when we're testing out their advertising on the front end, we'll kind of put it out kind of broad and then dial in after we get some data.
So I'm gonna give you a couple of examples. So I got one young lady. She, she helps, she works well, and she works with high performing women, which she calls it, helping them overcome past hurt so they can, you know, get into healthy, happy relationships. So she launched it speaking to high performing women.
Right? So as we got some data, she was getting like all types of women, right? It was looking at, it was like, well, what kind of women are you talking to? So she was kind of giving some feedback and I was like, alright, cool. I was like, well, explain in your day, in your, in your definition, what's your definition of high performing woman?
And she was like, what? Like me, like a doctor or somebody who's like a lawyer or somebody, you know, an entrepreneur or, you know, they have they're successful financially, but they just, how they just, they just work, work, work, because it just kind of numb themselves out because of the pain they've had in the past.
So, they can't have, you know, successful relationships or whatever. So, I'm like, alright cool. So now we got that data based on these calls you had. So, let's implement that into your lead magnet and we can, we can tie that into the messaging. Now she's obviously cut down the amount of scheduled calls that she's having.
And then, but she's getting, you know, higher quality calls because anybody who's going to stick past that filter at the beginning of the video, they're like, all right, cool. I meet that criteria. So now she tied that in. So, I'm gonna give you another example. You was gonna say something?
Mike Mark: [00:21:19]
So just to bounce it back and make sure I'm understanding and anyone else who's watching this is understanding.
So you're basically saying at the beginning of your VSL, it was like, you know, are you a doctor, lawyer, business woman, someone who's really achieved career success, but you seem like you're struggling when it comes time to love. Like, and so that's what you guys did? Is that the messaging?
Marquel Russell: [00:21:39]
So she basically was, so she basically was like, hey, this video, before you go any further, this video is specifically for I'm high-performing women.
And when I say high performing women, here's what that means. You're a doctor, you're a lawyer, you may be a successful business owner or corporate executive. You're making money, finding, you make, you're successful financially. And on on the surface, everybody who knows you, looks like everything is well, but below the surface, you know that that's the farthest thing from the truth… it's definitely a struggle there.
Mike Mark: [00:22:07]
So, did you also implement that on the like headline and then the lead of the ad or anything on the actual ad side of things, or was the first time that that messaging tweak appears in the VSL?
Marquel Russell: [00:22:20]
So, we, we twe, tweaked it in the VSL first because the copy was great and it kind of hit on it. However, it wasn't, there was still kind of filtering to, cause I guess some people's coming through booking without watching the video or whatever. So, we implemented in the video first and then we typically just work backwards. So, I was like, all right, this is still an issue then it's probably copy. But now we worked into the lead magnet video, so she doesn't have to redo the ad and all that. Let's start here and then we'll work back that way.
Mike Mark: [00:22:46]
Yeah. Okay. That makes sense. And then you said you had another example.
Marquel Russell: [00:22:49]
I'm going to give you another example. So I got another buddy of mine. He does real estate, and he does really well in real estate. And basically he teaches people how to get started in real estate, wholesaling and so forth.
And of course, you know, as a ton of people who are, you know, selling real estate stuff, no money down, get started, audited and type of stuff so it attracts like crazy amount of people. So I asked him, I'm like, hey man, where were you when you got into real estate? And he was like, well, I was a manager at quick trip and I was like, cool, how much did you make?
And he was like, I was making about 70 or 80,000 a year. And I was like, cool. So you essentially wanted to take the money you were making and then start use that money to get involved in real estate. And he was like, yeah. And I was like, great. So I was like the way we need to position this, it's like, hey, this isn't like, for example, literally saying like, hey, I know there's a lot of ma, you know, get started in real estate, no money down type of situations out there. This isn't that.
This is what individuals who you do well financially on your job or your business or whatever the case may be. And you want to take the money you're making and get started and leverage it to get started in real estate. And I'm gonna show you how to do that in this video. However, if you try to figure out the financial thing. You kind of in between jobs or you're struggling or whatever right now, this probably isn't going to be the best fit for you right now. However, if you do meet this criteria, stick with me for the next few minutes, and I'm gonna show you how I was able to do this with the money I was making as a manager on quick trip at Quicktrip, for example.
Mike Mark: [00:24:18]
Cool. Makes sense. Makes perfect sense. Okay. So you're using the messaging partly as a way to repel, but then your initial idea is go wide, narrow it down over time after you've had the data and the conversations to do that?
Marquel Russell: [00:24:32]
Mike Mark: [00:24:33]
That makes perfect sense. Okay. That's a good idea. That's a really good idea instead of trying to get it right out the gate cause then it allows you to have those conversations, get that data and then sorted it from there.
Marquel Russell: [00:24:42]
Mike Mark: [00:24:42]
Cool. And then, so I guess like, what was your journey more on your side things in terms of building the coaching business, cause you went from network marketing into then doing the online marketing, and then you, I know you gradually built the whole coaching business side of things up.
Like what were some of the places where as you started to grow, you got stuck, you stayed at maybe longer than you should have, some of the big lessons that you learned, which are like only from, you know, getting punched in the mouth real good a couple times, you know, like, so on that journey, cause right now you're at multiple seven figures with your current run rate and everything. So like, what were some of your sticking points? What were some of the more difficult places that you hit as you were scaling?
Marquel Russell: [00:25:27]
Yeah. So man, so for me it kind of was like doubt, first off, it was down in the messaging, right? So like, and we talked about it the other day. So it was like, so number one, I was focused on network marketers now, of course, that, that, that, that that's a whole thing in itself.
So then I started to realize, okay, I built this online business. So now it's like, all right, I'm going to teach you how to start an online business. Now, of course, that's super broad. So, but come to me, trying to learn, you know, how to do e-comm, how to do this, how to do this, how to do this. And I found my self having to customize something for everybody.
So then I got into, I mean, you remember this when I was doing this as well, how to turn your knowledge and expertise into offer and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Now I'm attracting all types of people with me who may not have quite expertise. They think they have an expertise, they just want to start a business.
So now I'm like, Oh, okay. So now we just continue to get that feedback from the calls, from the data. And that's what kind of got us to really narrow down to where we are now. Now, some of the sticking points we had, one of the biggest sticking points I would say we had was on the sales side because I early on, like I was doing all the sales calls, right.
So me being done at three o'clock was just wasn't happening. I was kind of like doing calls, early in the morning. And sometimes I didn't even get to go to the gym because I need to get as many calls in as possible, to, to get my numbers, right? So I'm doing calls all day. And then we would, was kept that, that particular area. So I think we probably got to about, 30, 40 grand a month, something like that. Some months of course worse, but I'm doing all the calls and I'm taking all the calls. I'm talking to him, you know, seven or eight people a day. Of course, you're dealing with the no shows and so forth.
And that really kept us now, as I said, you know what? I need to hire some sales people to get me off the phone or at least duplicate. So of course I did the typical way, sending out an email posting on Facebook, hired a few people that I knew now what I'm trying to train them and still do cause I'm trying to listen to their calls.
Oh my God. I would, I would've made that sale. Oh my God!
Mike Mark: [00:27:28]
Marquel Russell: [00:27:29]
Yeah, that was the deal. I find myself like reaching back out to some of those people like, hey, I saw that you spoke to such and such earlier, I wanted to see if you wanted to jump on a quick call, just so I can make sure you're good to go. So now I caught myself like going behind Nim plan, clean cleanup.
So I'm doing two things. Obviously, I have no expertise. I can sell, but no expertise in training sales people. Cause I always tell people just because you can do a thing doesn't necessarily mean you can teach it, right? You can develop into that, but that's a whole skill set in itself.
Mike Mark: [00:27:58]
Marquel Russell: [00:27:59]
I'm doing that. So I went through a few sales people. It didn't work out. And then I was like, alright, that's when we actually connected. And he was like, dude, I can just take the whole thing, you know, off your plate. And I'm like, perfect. And then once we were able to do it for that, now I was able to step back from, I'm not trying to sales, hire sales.
Because one time I did something crazy. I brought on like three sales people at one time, all people who I brought on and like, I'm the type of person, I got very, I don't want to say low patience with selling, but I'm the type of person where I'm like high risk adverse. So I'm like, all right, if you guys understand the basics of this thing, I'm gonna go ahead get y'all on the phone so we can start taking some calls. I mean, just kind of see what happens.
So now I've got a ramp up in ad spend. I got two or three guys I need, you know, sales coming from. And obviously that bombed, right? So now, yeah, so I would say that was the biggest first I'm trying to, so me trying to figure it out stuff out. And, I would say that was the biggest place we stayed at too long because I think it would have knew what we knew.
Now we could have easily blew past that and I could've just stayed focused on what I should be focused on versus trying to hire versus trying to recruit versus all this different stuff to make sure that sales side is on point.
Mike Mark: [00:29:09]
Yeah, I think the interesting thing, like almost going back to what you were saying just before you mentioned the sales bottleneck was the messaging piece of it. And then the interesting thing is how long you stuck with it through the messaging piece? And like, you know, we talked about this the other night when we had dinner, which was the how quickly people are to give up when their messaging isn't working right away, right? And it's like, your messaging was even working to a degree, but it wasn't necessarily scaling to the level you wanted it to.
Right? Like you could sell stuff, but then at scale it was just not quite bringing you the right people. And especially like, cause I remember when we first started working together, like, this is a cool note for anyone who is, watching this, Marquel is actually the, one of the first people that, he is the first person that worked with us after once I kind of really went out on my own.
And, so, and it's cool. Like the, the thing that I'm really honored by is that you're still here and still working with us after all that time. But I remember, so we got you sales rep, who is actually Moose at the time. And Moose came out, and Moose, like, killed it.
And then, but the issue was your payment plans were all jacked up. And a lot of it had to do with the fact that Moose could sell like anything to anyone and like, yeah, he was able to give, like everybody was applying for credit. Everybody was giving him a credit card. So we knew that we didn't have a sales problem.
We knew that there was a problem with the people that we were attracting because their credit apps kept bouncing. And then their credit cards only had like a hundred dollars to charge on them. And, it was interesting because like when it was just you at the time, I think the volume was low enough where you could sell enough of the people.
And then, when, when you got off the phone or you're able to like max out Moose, it was kinda like, that was when you really noticed that Holy crap, even this messaging path isn't working at the level I want it to, and then you kind of took it and went back to the drawing board and came back with the current form, which is, is what you're describing now, which is like, hey, you, you have an expertise, but you want to scale it as opposed to like package your expertise.
Yeah, it's, it's, it's a total, it's a total game changer. And like, and I would say it this, cause I don't know if anybody's struggling with this. I know for me, I think the biggest thing for me was I think I had a mental bottleneck that they kept me stuck there for a minute as well, because I knew I was good at what I do.
However, I was like, huh, am I ready to serve at a high level? Like, am I ready to really step in? and I think it was mental. So I always use it. The example I use is like, I felt like Jay Z, right? So Jay Z, he was like, alright, Jay Z, do you keep dropping bars at the level that, you know, you can drop bars or do you dumb down the lyrics just to cater to people who feel like you should dumb down the lyrics?
And I felt like me, I was dumbing down my lyrics to work with the math test versus like stepping up and saying, okay, I know I can serve at a high level. Let me step up and step into my greatness and really share what I can share.
And then that allowed me to start attracting a different caliber of people. Cause my conversation changed versus like the typical, you know, start, start a home and start a business and blah, blah, blah. It was just a different level of conversation, which of course attract a different type of person.
Mike Mark: [00:32:28]
Yeah. And I think, also it. As much as it helps you on the marketing and sales side, it helps equally, if not even more on the fulfillment side to where your results are better because you have people coming to you with the right things in place, and then you're able to get them what they need and then help them scale way faster.
So, and then with the sales rep process, I mean, like you said you were at 30 grand a month when you were kind of doing everything yourself, 30, 40 grand a month on a good month. And then post sales rep, what was like the before and after, when, once you brought on sales reps?
Marquel Russell: [00:33:06]
Meaning when I hired this, the sales when I did, was get themselves out my myself for it?
Mike Mark: [00:33:09]
No, no. Like once you got a sales rep performing, which is really like, basically after, when we got Moose on board and got you off the calls.
Marquel Russell: [00:33:17]
Okay. Got it. So once, so once, so we went from there to like doubling, right? So we went from there to like double cause I wasn't really having to take and we, so we doubled without me really even taking calls.
So I initially, I was taking a few calls, then Moose was taking some calls and then I was slowly able to take less calls and moose was able to take on more calls. So was able to double essentially and get it to like the 70 to 80 grand a month or so without me doing calls so I can focus on other areas. And that was, that was pretty quick before things kinda plateaued a little bit.
Mike Mark: [00:33:47]
Yep. And then you got stuck for a while at that, like 80 grand a month. And I think you were there for like a year and a half, right? And then, which is a terrible place to be at 80 grand a month, or like, you know, you got sales reps and it's just sucks, dude.
But so you're there for a while. And then I guess what was like. What was the bottleneck there? And then what was the epiphany that kind of helped you then unlock that bottleneck?
Marquel Russell: [00:34:14]
So I think, I think right there at that point, it was, I was the bottleneck. So it was kind of like I was doing, I was still like, everything was kind of still directly taught to me.
So one of the biggest things that we talked about before is like, A lot of stuff in our system, it was more about Marquel, Marquel, Marquel, Marquel. So now we made it, I started to just pull myself out and made it less about being Marquel. People want to work with Marquel. People want to work with Marquel, but now people want the CU system, you know what I'm saying? What they really want is the system. So now when it comes to fulfillment, it doesn't matter if I'm there to fulfill. It doesn't matter if I'm on the call, people aren't necessarily coming to the call, looking to speak to me. They're not necessarily showing up, you know, looking for me to always fulfill.
They understand it's the whole team. Because before that it was all Marquel, Marquel, marquelrussell.com, it was my logo, the branding, and all that. Now we removed all that. Now it's more about the company. Now it's more about the system and now I'm empowering other people to be in position. So now the business still runs like a machine regardless if I'm doing calls, regardless if I'm on the ads, regardless if I'm on a coaching call in the, in the group or whatever, it still run. So I think I was the biggest bottleneck because I had a lot of the knowledge locked in my head but never really took the time to really like unpack it and really started giving it off to other people on the teams. I think that was the, that was the biggest piece at that point.
Mike Mark: [00:35:38]
So one thing I'm curious about in your experience of that, like how much of it was just almost like the emotional component of that versus the actual technical, like documenting your knowledge and shifting the stuff like how much of it was emotional?
Marquel Russell: [00:35:53]
Dude. All of it was emotional. Cause, cause it, cause in your mind you're like, alright, dang. Our artists are gonna well it's because first off it's like, I think it's a lot of ego number one. Cause you're thinking a lot of times you think ain't, nobody can fulfill as good as you will, or nobody can still as good as you will or all the different types of stuff.
So there's a lot of ego there, which, you know, leads to the emotion stuff. So it's all of that. So I never really took the time to really unpack it because if I was on, I feel like I'm in control. If I released too much control, now, you know, number one, what do I do? Number two, can I trust other people to still fulfill? Number three, the clients aren't going to respond or it's not going to convert as well if I'm not totally hands on, which was all total bias.
Mike Mark: [00:36:39]
Yeah. Yeah. And I think that though, like, there's a few parts of it, right? So one of it I think is, and cause like I see this bottleneck a lot and it, I mean even like personally knowing it intellectually like emotionally, I still experience parts of it.
You know what I mean? Cause I think it's just a, it's what it is. And like a huge part of your identity gets tied to your business and then your identity is all wrapped up in it. Like what you're saying with the ego part of it. And then your significance is also like there's an element of significance of everybody saying how smart you are and how great you are and how will you change their life and how, how thank God they met you.
And, Oh my God. I remember when I first talked to Marquel and like all that ego really good, like it makes you feel significant. And then when you leave that, it's like, ah, like what can fill that void? Because I think that, you know, for almost anyone I talked to that has this type of business, that like what you're doing and what we're doing, and like anyone scaling these types of businesses with clients, like everyone says, like the money is the best thing.
Only second to the moment when the people get results, right? And like, when you see how the actual product is impacting your client's lives, that is really the best part of it, right? And it's like, Like when you watch a client go buy a new car. When you watch a client go buy a new house. When you watch a client, be able to say, like I had a baby and I didn't have any issues.
Like, like when you have a client who has a baby, like we have like two weeks ago, client had a baby. He's like, yeah, dude, we're on pace to hit a record month. And I was able to take the time off to be with the girls. Like that's the sort of stuff that really like gets super addicting. And then when you start to pull out your significance, when it's not all like, you know, Marquel did this, Marquel did this, Marquel did this, you know, it's like, I don't know.
There's that sense where you get kind of like, scared in a way. And then the other thing is that you also have the fears of like, well, what if the person takes my stuff? What if the clients like that person more than they liked me? Like stupid little ideas, right? Like, but what if their loyalty then now is to that person and not to me.
And then like, I think all those things get wrapped up in it. But I do think that also like to touch on what you're saying, like it's total bias that the results did. Drop, but I think that they do in most situations, we see temporarily drop, right? Cause, cause you do have to get your ads and you do have to get your website and you do have to get your branding and you do have to get new testimonials that say, gosh, the client attraction university method is the best thing I've ever done.
Right. And they have to talk about the system all throughout all, everything. You know what I mean? And I think that in that gap of when you decide, like, okay, I'm going to move all attention to the system, as opposed to me as a human, that there is a subtle dip in conversions for a period of time and it is real.
But then at the end of the day, now you're on the other side of it, where your business is way more attractive to any buyer. If you ever wanted to sell it, not saying that you did, but like you don't want to have a business that dies with you when you die. You know what I mean? You want to build a business that can sell when, if you ever wanted to, for whatever reason.
And so like the business is far more attractive to a buyer. You're going to get a higher multiple, if you were to ever offer it to a buyer and it's easier to operate and more fun to operate now.
Marquel Russell: [00:40:00]
Mike Mark: [00:40:03]
Yeah, that's an interesting sticking point. And then, so, how long did it take you to solve that specific bottleneck?
Marquel Russell: [00:40:10]
I would say it probably took me once I, after I realized it?
Mike Mark: [00:40:15]
How long did it take you to realize it is a real question then?
Marquel Russell: [00:40:18]
Oh, my God probably took me to honestly man, how long it took me to realize it? Probably maybe like three or four years, man.
Mike Mark: [00:40:26]
Marquel Russell: [00:40:27]
Yeah. I would say easily, probably about three or four, because I was just, wasn't even conscious of it, right? Yeah, cause I was like in his personal brand thing, his personal brand, personal brand, personal brand. So I wasn't really even conscious of it until we start growing. And I was like, all right, we're capped at right here. And then it's basically what you got a team when they're like, want to take stuff off your plate and they want to do things, but I'm kind of like, I'm still holding it closely guarded to me because I won't take the time to like, break it out even when I brought on my first assistant.
Cause I think we probably got to like 30, 40L what, whatever, before I even brought an assistant on. And even being when I was hiring her and trying her, like me unpacking again, everything that I was doing on a day to day basis, I was like, this is crazy. I do a lot of stuff that I don't even really realize that I'm doing.
So now, we start breaking it all out, putting it in project management software, and now everything is systemized, but I wasn't even conscious of it before then it was just like hustle, crying. I'm just getting it done. yeah, I'm just going to get it all done no matter what. So yeah, that's that's, that was huge.
Mike Mark: [00:41:28]
Yeah. I remember too. So one of my like favorite moments was, when we first started working together and a year like, yo, I got this trip to Vegas and the Grand Canyon coming up with the family. And then you went and like you were at the grand Canyon showing your kids one of the natural wonders of the world. And then you made like a pay-in-full that day. I was like, this is Epic. That was so cool.
Marquel Russell: [00:41:51]
And the cool thing was, it was cooler. So we were in Vegas and then Moose was actually in Florida on the beach or something like that closing deal. So it was, it was dope.
Mike Mark: [00:42:00]
Yeah, it's funny how it works. So, and then, I mean, I think like what's been cool to see as well as like, even since, well, really since like October to now, the growth has been insane.
And even like, like a lot of the work had been set up and then now you're starting to hit where it's like, what are you on track to do this month?
Marquel Russell: [00:42:24]
So we'll probably do like, so we're projecting like 350 this month.
Mike Mark: [00:42:28]
Dude, that's sick.
Marquel Russell: [00:42:30]
Mike Mark: [00:42:31]
And that's not like big backends sales or anything like that, that's just core products from your evergreen systems, which is like, yeah, that's no launch. That's no nothing. That's just basically two reps. And then how, how many setters do you have right now?
Marquel Russell: [00:42:45]
So we have two reps and we have four setters now. So we got three new we're onboarding, but we had one, we've got three with like getting started taking calls this week so it'd be four.
Mike Mark: [00:42:54]
So really two reps, one setter, and then three in trial.
Marquel Russell: [00:42:58]
Mike Mark: [00:42:59]
Yeah. Okay. Crazy. Two reps and one setter and then you're on track pacing 350 and then you're doing it where you're out at 3:00 PM most days, like, you know,
Marquel Russell: [00:43:11]
I just work Monday through Thursday. So it was like Friday, Saturday, Sunday, I don't really do anything other than the huddle on Friday, but that's it.
Mike Mark: [00:43:18]
That's crazy. That's crazy like you know, on the outside, I'm sure you've been like you at 30 grand a month couldn't imagine this, you know what I mean? Doing like 10 times the production with a fraction of the input is pretty crazy.
Marquel Russell: [00:43:33]
Yeah, bro. As I say.
Mike Mark: [00:43:35]
Yeah, and you're doing the stuff too with the live events and the big backends and you tied all that stuff in as well. And like it's, I'm really excited to see how that hits. And when you do stack this on that, like.
Marquel Russell: [00:43:47]
Yeah, it's gonna get crazy.
Mike Mark: [00:43:48]
Yeah , cool. Let's see. Do you guys, any of the viewers have any questions for Marquel about his process of scaling? I'd like to make sure that if you guys do have any questions, I see we got Malachi with us. We got Chris with us. We got, Adam Rundell, what up Adam? It looks like we've got a lot of pretty legendary people. Ryan, Samera, do you guys have any questions for Marquel about his process of scaling and any of the bottlenecks that maybe he's hit along the way, or any of the challenges that maybe your face thing that you want to run by Marquel if you did drop them in there.
Marquel, did you have anything like that you wanted to give to the audience or anywhere that maybe you want to send them or any resources for them to check out?
Marquel Russell: [00:44:31]
Yeah. So, if they want to dive like more in like a more granular step by step process of our app process, like how we launched ads, how we scale the ads, like I exact process step by step. We can, we got, we put together a playbook cause some people was asking about it. If they go to paidadplaybook.com. So, P A I D adplaybook.com. You can get the whole like rundown step by step and also some bonus training videos that goes with it as well. And he like breaks down everything like in crazy detail.
Mike Mark: [00:44:59]
Cool. So paidadplaybook.com and then over there, they'd be able to get that and then, run through it. Perfect. Let's see. I'm not seeing any last questions here, so, do you have any final words that you want to leave them with as they're kind of thinking about their journey to scale to seven figures?
Marquel Russell: [00:45:18]
Not man, I would say, I would say the biggest thing is like simplicity, right? It's really simpli, simplifying. So, like scaling this thing up to seven figures and beyond it's like, it's like, it seems like this big monster, right? But for me, I'm like, all right, how do you like simplify? So obviously you got the marketing side you want to dial in with that includes the messaging and ads and all that.
Then you got the sales side and then once you sale, you got, you know, the fulfillment and then, operations and things of that nature, but you break it down and you're like, all right. It's not this massive thing. It's like dialing in a few pillars and you said, okay, for the next 90 days, we're going to focus on dialing this in, for example, the 30 day, 60 days or whatever the next nine days after that, we're going to doubt this. Then next time out there that we're going to doubt it, we're going to make sure all this is on point. So what I tell my clients, when they, when they start trying to complicate it even more, when they was like, well, this and this and this, I'm like, look, now that you got your machine going, the only focus every day is leads, apps, sales and service.
So, it's like getting more leads, converting those leads and the scheduled calls, enrolling them and then serving these clients at a really high level. And when you start at a really high level, that's going to create more client success stories, not an outrage about you sending you more people.
And it just feeds back into those four things. And if you just focus on those four things, every day, that's, it's really that simple, to be honest with you, I know there's like an overseeing like an oversimplification, but those are the four things that we focus on. That's pretty much it.
Mike Mark: [00:46:51]
Yup. That makes sense. And, I think that, like the thing in this conversation I really liked, and I want to highlight, and if you like are just catching this now, or you're on the replay, like I would go back and like, listen to what Marquel talks about on how to dial in the messaging because when we see people's like we get to operate a lot of these systems, I'm going to get to steal all the systems and it's almost always the messaging and the offer and the message market match and the product market match that is going to be a lot of the thing that's going to be sort of like your limit to your growth. And like, even in your case, you know, you knew what you're doing and you're still casting too wide of a net, but I like that.
Your whole process as well was not overthinking it. So, then you never get started and you always have an excuse. It's like get started and know that you're going to do it wrong and be ready to tighten up your messaging further. And like, in fact, proactively look for the questions in order to tighten up your messaging so that eventually your product is even better, your results are even better. And then it kind of wraps back into those four things.
Marquel Russell: [00:47:57]
Yup. 100%, because it's all about the data when it boils down to it, man, you launch, you get, you get some data. And the best market research is ever going to happen is on the phone anyway, on the phone, when you start to get some data and you're like, alright, and we look at it like the sales fees, the marketing in the market and feeds to sales and we keep that feedback loop and then you get it dialed in. And I was running like a machine.
Mike Mark: [00:48:19]
Yeah, that's cool. The sales feeds, marketing and marketing feed and sales, I like that. All right, man. Well, thank you for taking the time out and if you guys are in the group and you got any questions, just drop them below we'll circle back and kind of make sure you guys get answers to any questions that you did have on the interview.
Overall, I hope you enjoyed it and then be sure to go check out Marquel's playbook over at paidadsplaybook.com and we'll see you here next week.
Marquel Russell: [00:48:43]
I appreciate you having me.
Mike Mark: [00:48:44]
That’s it for this week’s interview. Hope you guys enjoyed it. If you did enjoy this interview, we do one like it every single week inside of our free Facebook group called Seven Figure Agency Owners and High Ticket Coaches. So, if you’re an agency owner, coach, service provider, and you’re really wanting to scale to seven figures and beyond, join us in our group. It’s coachingsales.com/group. Again, coaching sales.com/group. See you on the inside.