Tyler Jorgenson 0:01
You’re listening to biz ninja entrepreneur radio. This show was created for entrepreneurs, business owners, marketers and dreamers who want to learn from the experts of today and drastically shortcut their own success to build a business that supports their dream lifestyle. Since 2011, Tyler Jorgensen has been interviewing business thought leaders from around the world, a serial entrepreneur himself. Tyler also shares his personal insights into what’s working in business today. Welcome to biz Ninja, entrepreneur radio. Welcome out to biz ninja entrepreneur radio. I am your host, Tyler Jorgensen. And today we have Paul Ace coming to us from across the pond. And so wherever you’re listening, whether it be iTunes, or whether it be on live on ABC News, radio, we’re grateful that you’re here. Paul, welcome out to the show.
Paul Ace 0:56
Cast Tyler is great to be here. And yet, especially across the pond, I like speaking to lovely Americans like myself.
Tyler Jorgenson 1:04
Yeah, absolutely. And so we do have worldwide listeners. And one thing that I love about the the world of business today is the internet really collapses the world and allows opportunity happen everywhere. But before we dive into really what you’re doing with conversational commerce, and really focusing on the human element, let’s dial back a bit to the Paul Ace of yesteryear. When was the first time that you realize that you were an entrepreneur?
Paul Ace 1:30
What To be honest, it was at school. So we had this thing called young enterprise. And it was basically we we had a business selling t shirts at 16. And when I say selling t shirts, it was one design. And that was it. And it just said magalia t which is Italian for t shirts. And you know what, like, so everyone, everyone’s like, right, who wants to be the managing director, and then I tend to simply want me. And then obviously, that stopped for the rest of the last 13 years. Now I’ve always been me, and then it naturally just to progress to all I want to be the leader anyway.
Tyler Jorgenson 2:12
Yeah. And so you started I mean, in the T shirt world and in was that online, or was that direct in person.
Paul Ace 2:19
Now that was a good old fashioned, you know, I remember going to the local shopping center, and we sold some there. And then they did like an event at the end of the year for all the other schools in the area. And we sold some of the T shirts, I think at the end of the year, we we’ve probably sold about, I don’t know $250 bow pounds, 250 pounds and about breakeven in the end. So you know, breaking even, that’s
Tyler Jorgenson 2:43
pretty good for your first your first dabble into physical goods. Here’s the thing, I think it’s such a powerful thing for people that want to get into e commerce to start in really like actually transacting face to face, I think sometimes people lose that element of the, like human experience, because they’re hidden behind a computer. Do you think that’s how to factor into your journey at all, is where you started? Yeah, I
Paul Ace 3:07
think going through the process, you know, sometimes with the digital side of things, like you say, it’s almost like, we go into this little box, and then we forget about everyone else is actually human being heart. You know, it’s like, you know, that person you speak to right? They’re an actual human, not just a lead,
Unknown Speaker 3:25
Paul Ace 3:26
So when you’re face to face, obviously, you have that back and forth. And you learn about good old fashioned negotiation and how you’d speak in that respect as well. And then what we look at is like, how do you then go and apply that online? So yeah, I think 100% is really important to speak into, right, like you’re winning person.
Tyler Jorgenson 3:44
Yeah, absolutely. And not, not forget that the humans are involved everywhere in every step of this journey. So I mean, obviously, you’re not still selling shirts with Italian letters on them. Right? So what was your next big leap in your journey?
Paul Ace 3:58
So went from that. And then when I was at school, I was a, I was a drummer. So I was like, I’m gonna do some events. So I started doing some like Balala band kind of things, sold some tickets to events, I actually had a band come down the cold. And they actually came fairly famous of support, like Foo Fighters and stuff now as well, they were called the strips. I don’t know if you’ve heard of those. But like, yeah, at the time, I was like, wow, these guys are amazing. And, like 15 years later, now the support in big acts. So we did that did that did a few of those. Then I went into the corporate world and worked in a bakery, being a manager and running like 20 staff at 20 years old, which was quite overwhelming when you’re working a lot of people older than letting you go in. Like learning how to manage people, which like being hooked into the deep end nothing was is the word and then from there. Like I say, going from the drumming background. I actually went Do you know what? Well what if I learned song Sing. And then I became a Wedding Singer.
Tyler Jorgenson 5:03
natural progression of things natural progression from
Paul Ace 5:07
drugs to singing
Tyler Jorgenson 5:08
sell t shirts, manager bakery Wedding Singer totally normal. Yeah,
Unknown Speaker 5:13
Tyler Jorgenson 5:15
How did? How did being a Wedding Singer like how did that help you become more entrepreneurial?
Paul Ace 5:21
That’s really when I first started to discover online marketing. And I was like, Okay, cool. I’m doing these wedding fairs and things like that. I’d started off doing all the pubs and clubs, like real, the hustle and grind, kind of going into a pub. And just going right, here’s my show real. Here’s all the songs that I do. Here’s my testimonials, like, essentially, like a big sales page, but in personal form, and I remember going into this one pub, and she said to me, yeah, we’ve got no space this year, I went just watch the video. Just I saw last just watch the video. So she spent two minutes watching the video, she went right, I’m booking you for this time, and I booking you for Boxing Day, like one of the biggest days of the year. Yeah, because you could see. So sometimes it’s just having that persistence. And I think what happens digitally, sometimes that gets lost, right? Because it’s easy to move on to the next thing. But when you’re in a position where you’ve got to go into another job or another wedding fair, and just keep hustling through it, then you learn a lot from that. So then going into the wedding side of things, then I was like, Okay, well, what if we could generate leads online? Like I learned about self liquidating offers? And I was like, Well, what if we could, you know, cover the cost of acquiring a lead? And then I wonder the game right? That’s, that’s what everyone teaches? Yeah, it To start off with, like, if you can spend $10 and make $10 back, then you get unlimited customers, and you win the game. You never have to worry about money ever again. Right? So I was like, Well, what could I make? So I created an info product, which was a physical link to info product, which was called a dream money and secrets box, because what does everyone want? They want a dream money. So we use that the magical word of secrets that I think has been used quite a lot right now. But at the time, I was like, well, who? So we created that and our cost per acquisition, I think was around $15. So we weren’t far off. And then we were using the acquisition from that to put people in a Facebook group. And in terms of generating leads for the wedding singing didn’t really generate any leads. However, we inadvertently built a Facebook group of three and a half 1000 brides. And it was like, Ah, well do the whole ask them what they want. Give it to them.
Unknown Speaker 7:28
Right. So we just said what do you want?
Paul Ace 7:30
Anyway, we want bridesmaids dresses at a reasonable price. So is that? Okay? When on AliExpress bridesmaids dresses? Okay, cool. Yeah, find those for $10 sell them for $40? Great markup. Good stuff. Then we started selling those did like $100,000. You selling bridesmaids dresses? And then I was like, Huh, this marketing stuff is starting to work.
Tyler Jorgenson 7:53
Yeah, before you go too much further on that like I think what’s really important that I see in that is your original plain, isn’t what you ended up doing. Right? Like you had a plan one plan to made an additional adjustment, did the secret formula, ask them what they want and give it to them? Like you didn’t say, Hey, I’m going to be a Wedding Singer so that I can sell bridesmaids dresses. So like a big part of ecommerce is staying agile and responding to what’s working. I think sometimes people forget the human element on both sides of the equation, right? Like we are human, like we need to stay adaptive, and we need to stay flexible. But then there’s the the term that you’re really driving, which is conversational commerce, right, teach us a little bit about what c calm is and why it’s so important right now.
Paul Ace 8:39
Well, here’s where that transition came as well. That is one of the things you know, when using Facebook ads as well, I just started to learn how to use those at the time. And I was like, I want it to reduce my cost per acquisition down. You know, that’s the most important thing is that you can spend more to acquire customer great, you win. So I was like, Well, how can I do that. And I found this thing it was called Scout, which I don’t know if some of your listeners might use it. I don’t know if you’re still out there or not. But basically what it did is it sent me a message of a messenger every time we had an abandoned cart with their phone number and a script to ring them up. So I would ring every abandoned cart and just say, hey, just a courtesy call, I noticed, you know, you’ve got that far. Like what went wrong. I just want to help you out. And then the magic of that was at the end of it. We’d say great. Listen, I really appreciate you giving me that feedback today. Just to say thank you, I want to give you this discount code. And something that I’ve used ever since and everything that I do is like so I want to give you the discount code. But then the next part is crucial because most people just go there it is. And then they get off the phone and then that’s it. The next word that has to come out your mouth is just check that that works. And then they go Okay, let me check and then you’ve got them all the way off most of the way through the pipeline again. They go Wait, let me just check my phone. Yeah, yeah, it looks like this. Count goes what you call. So is that working on the checkout? You just check the checkout page to make sure that’s working. Yeah, that’s working. Great. Cool. I’ll leave you to place your order. Right. So we just hold the hand through the clothes, they didn’t feel like they’re being sold to, we’re just helping them.
Tyler Jorgenson 10:13
Yeah, that’s fascinating. So it’s really, it’s treating it like you’re being a concierge or a helper instead of a salesperson, luckily, but really, you’re just making sure they get to the next step, which is the goal of a salesperson, right? So, but it’s, but at the same time, it’s putting the client first and the customer first. I think that’s really interesting. When I when I first got started in e commerce, I had, you know, like live chat widgets on on my ecommerce store. And I would do some kind of similar, we wouldn’t call but if I would notice someone would hang on the checkout for too long. You could like prompt the chat to come up, like, Hey, is there anything? How is everything going? We could offer discount code, stuff like that? And what’s interesting is it same thing with calling someone and timing and you can do those things when you’re at the beginning. But then we lose, both through economies of scale, and sometimes as victims of our own success. We lose that as we grow. But that’s leaving money on the table. So something tells me you have a solution for that.
Paul Ace 11:12
Yeah, so we look at creating an 80% human like experience, and then a 20% of human experience. So you know that where does the majority of the time go? When you create in any kind of conversation or outreach? It’s the initial outreach, right? So we look at, okay, how many of those messages can we automate? Where it’s just like, Hey, I just want you to reach out a Is everything okay? And all we’re looking for is a response. Once you get that response, then you can turn to human takeover. But then you’re only doing human takeover with the people that are actually, you know, qualified, or they’ve got genuine questions about the offer. Instead of going all day trying to ring people and go in. No, they didn’t answer No, they didn’t answer No, they didn’t answer. Well, imagine just shooting someone a text in a light in any commerce format, shooting someone a text straight afterwards that, hey, I just noticed your running car. Is it okay, if we give you a quick call? Or just noticed what went wrong? Can you let me know, I need to start a back and forth tax conversation. The other thing that we used to do around that as well as we used to do you know, what were you like samples of the fabric.
Unknown Speaker 12:19
Paul Ace 12:21
I knew that if we could create a better customer experience, when we give the sample than any other company, then they will come back and buy from us. So it’s like, well, how do you do that? Yeah, so every single person who ordered a sample, I would record a bond joro. Now, if people don’t know what bondora is, it’s a personalized video message. Right? So basically, we set up a trigger, that as soon as someone orders, it sends a notification to my phone to say, record this person, a video message. And it was like 22nd video, is that, hey, you just want to say thank you so much for ordering that sample is going to be on the way to you in a number of days. In the meantime, there’s a link below this video just to go and join our Facebook group right now. We’d love to have you as part of our community. We do a live every Monday as well, that answers Brian’s questions. So if you’ve got any questions at all, we really want to help and support you as much as possible. So then, what does that do? People are like, Oh my god, these guys give so much value. Yeah. And then they’re gonna come back and buy from you.
Tyler Jorgenson 13:18
Wow. So are you still managing that Facebook group? Now? I’m always fascinated by today. And we’re gonna I want to hear the rest of the story. But like, things work, right? And then you get to a point where you either have to like automate or sell or move on or, or close. And so yeah, what happened next?
Paul Ace 13:35
So one thing that you need to know when you’re still in any econ business is know your numbers. And something that I made one of the biggest mistakes I could have made I read this book called profit first, and then realize what a big mistake that I’d made. If you haven’t read the book profit versus by Mike mccalla wits. Yep, cracking book. And I was calculating my return rate based on that month sales, not on the month when the sale happened, but we had a 90 day return policy. So what was happening is I was looking at the return rate going over at 12%. We weren’t we were at 30, which is about the industry average for clothing and fashion. But I was on Oh, wait a minute. So what happened is I started to scale all and then I’m getting more and more returns. And then by the time I realized I had I call it post Manor phobia. Right. So the postman will come to the door each day. And you know, they have this scanner. I know you call it the mailman. So the mailman had the scanner, right? And every time we scanned it, I was like $250 scan it again. $250 $250 and literally like I got a sick feeling in my stomach every time I heard that noise. And we are $25,000 come back in two months. And but I can’t switch the ads off because I didn’t have the cash flow to cover the returns. So I’m like, I know I’m sending this out, it’s gonna come back. But I need to like, reduce the ads that so it took me like four months of running the ads to reduce it down just to manage the cash flow, we took out two loans. We had some help from family and everything and we Neela went bankrupt. And that’s when I went, right. What one decision then was, what am I good at? What do we enjoy? And I did a line across the middle. What do I hate? What do I love what I’m great at? What am I all for that and applied everything that I had done in every business that I’ve done. And then what came out on top was conversational commerce.
Tyler Jorgenson 15:35
I’m so glad that you share that part of the journey in e commerce people for some reason, especially if they’re if it’s their first time and they’re transitioning from a nine to five, they think it’s like this bed of roses, where it’s just amazing. And you just, especially if it’s dropship, and you’re just sending stuff out, and you’re making money. And look, there are stories like that where it happens, but the one that you just shared where, man, my revenues are good, profits are good. But the difference between a 12 and a 30% return rate is all of your profit. And that, like, Look, you probably could have managed scale differently, you probably could have done things to mitigate, maybe, but the biggest thing is that you realized it and you would have you definitely would have scaled differently. And I’ve watched econ brands go into the million dollars a month of revenue, only to realize like, they’re making less than they were making when they were doing 2030 grand a month. Like Yeah, crazy, triple net, right? And it’s but now it all depends on what the big goal is like do is your goal to become like the world’s wedding like retailer or like bridal dress retail, well, then maybe it’s worth going through that to figure it out. But if you’re not enjoying it, like the ability to like the maturity to pull the plug and say, Okay, I’m going to strategically exit this and then reposition. I think that’s such an important part of e commerce and I and II of entrepreneurship is the willingness to say, I don’t want to do this anymore. And I think that’s, like, it’s different than what a lot in the world right now is like we have the fear of failure. But it’s okay to fail as long as like you’re learning from it and you’re like, failure doesn’t have to be a negative thing. It’s like hey, okay, I failed at being you know, the UK is number one bridal, you know, bridesmaids dress supplier. But what did I learn? I learned conversational commerce. I learned this and then now you’re you’re focusing on amplify see Calm, calm, right, and what you’re doing with there. So tell us a little bit about like, what was that that you extracted from that experience that and how is it helping you do what you do now?
Paul Ace 17:40
Yeah, so a lot of the things that we did in that business, you know, we started off doing some stuff with messenger bots. So we we like, then I started to really get into automations and become the geek that my face respects, you know, like. So we created things like, who to invite to your wedding, we created a bot called the bot, which was like a guestlist decider. And it would go through this flow and say like, you know, are they on this side? Or that side? Have you spoke to him in the last six months? Or that? And it was like, either? Yeah, how are they getting through the door or damn right, they’re not getting through the door. So we created like this really fun experience. And then I started, like, experiment aim with using that, like for other businesses, a messenger, then started to get into SMS and the emails and then and then right in those things in a conversational way, as well. So I did a presentation in the group last week. And as I said, one of the first emails you want to send after your webinar is a very, very simple, what went wrong, but not a stock? What went wrong, like a personalized outreach style? Hey, it’s Tyler. Just no issue finished watching the webinar. And I haven’t seen your order come through, right. So that almost assumption close of I haven’t seen your order come through. So something must have gone wrong. I just wonder what went wrong? Can you just reach back and let me know, simple as that. And she’s just posting the group saying why this is the best response rate I’ve ever had on an email. Because then she can just answer their personal objections. And they’re like, Oh, no, it wasn’t you. It was me. I was wondering about this. You know, I was only enough to get the funds together for it. Oh, well, we do have a payment plan. Oh, I didn’t know you had a payment plan all that much all at the time, and so on and so forth.
Tyler Jorgenson 19:23
Yeah. And it’s interesting. By having that feedback loop, you can also then build those into your closes and upcoming webinars, right and shorten the cycle. So there’s less and less of them going through what
Paul Ace 19:34
the market research essentially,
Tyler Jorgenson 19:35
yeah. So you made you made this pivot. And then you started like, within just a few months, you started working with some big names in the industry, like john Lee Dumas and Pete Vargas, like how did you make that move so aggressively and so fast?
Paul Ace 19:50
I fall in a little bit of the dream 100 process. So at the time, when we first started, we were just doing boxing. Now with 70 changes and everything going on that that was especially beating your Doesn’t really create longevity. So at the time, I was doing a podcast called Bill Maher about Friday. So we would contact influencers and say, Hey, I will build you a bot for free live on Facebook. All I ask is we interview you for half an hour first, and then we’ll build your bot after that. And they’re like, okay, so I reached out to john Lee Dumas. And I actually spent probably a good, you know, six, seven hours working on his build before, because I was like, I want to make this one where we just present the result straight away. And he was like, wait a minute. So you took us from there to that I can’t remember the exact number. So I don’t want a quote. And he was like, that’s really impressive. And then he introduced me to someone else, who we did a challenge with. And they went from $35,000 to $293,000 in the first launch. And then obviously, then other people started going, Hey, who’s doing all this messenger stuff and everything. And then we got introduced to Pete Vargas and some other people as well. And then it just creates, obviously, this feedback loop. So the first step to get that we kind of look at on a ladder, right? So if you see everyone like an appoint system, so the top like Tony Robbins is like a 10, someone who has never done a single marketing thing before might be a one, how do you go and find nines that you can work for, for free to then go and get paid to work with eights.
Tyler Jorgenson 21:17
I like it, it’s kind of I love it, I was gonna use an analogy, but it’s alright. I think that’s amazing. So I think a lot of people in this space and in the service provider space, they’re afraid to do that first step, like, because I’m a big believer of getting paid for your skills. But if your skills are unproven, you got to find a way to prove them. And you either gonna show major case studies of your own, or you got to go get some clients and like, if it’s unproven, like there’s some ethics there of whether you should be charging for it. Right. So I love the way that you did that where you went to john, you over delivered? And then you know, you’re able to say, jld, look what we did for you, and then make get those introductions and do more. Where do you think businesses are leaving the most money on the table right now? Although, we’ve got a little bit but like, let’s go into that for like, both in like webinar Econ, like, in a few other ways, how can people follow up better in their business right now.
Paul Ace 22:10
So most people just do email, firstly. And if you just doing that you’re leaving money on the table, right? So if you think you’ve got 20%, open rates, something like that, and then the click through rate might be like, you know, three, four, or 5%, then you’ve got a tiny proportion of the people actually flicking through. Secondly, you know, that, think about if you walk down the street right now, and you see a billboard on the right hand side with, let’s say, it’s advertising for sale, right. And you see that, and that’s it, but you walk past it every day. But you see that every day, and you’re like, you know, it just becomes plain, you don’t see it. As you walk past. However, you saw a billboard, as you’re walking past, then you go home, and you’re here on the radio, for sale ad. And then you maybe you see I post her in the shop that’s for that, and then you see him on TV, then you’re like, God, these guys are everywhere. So what we look at is like, how do you create a multi channel process where then they feel like you can, you know, they say you have to have seven touch points with someone to know like and trust Him, then we create that quicker by making it feel like they’ve known you a lot longer. Right? So then if you’re on email, SMS, voice mail drops, so you know, you’re sending a voicemail straight to the phone, and then you know, potentially putting in a personalized video message. Or even add any mass in Germany, things like that. Like they’re gonna be like, Jesus, these these guys are reaching out to me from every angle.
Tyler Jorgenson 23:44
Yeah, it’s like, like from the office. It’s woof, right? We’re like, sends out every single, like, goes fax, email, you know, everything all at the same time? No, but I get it. And I love that omni channel, multi channel concept of follow up because, like, I don’t read almost any of my emails that come through, right, and especially if they have an unsubscribe link, I’m probably not going to see it. But like, if I was an SMS, okay, you’re going to increase my follow up, right? If it’s a personalized video, it’s going to be a little bit higher, if it’s a voice message, you went to the bottom of my list, but that like my stack, and my preference of tech is different than somebody else’s. So you have to like, see what’s working and like you said, Be human about it. And be you know, it’s you can’t necessarily personalize every single touch point. But making it about a real conversation, I think is a big deal.
Paul Ace 24:32
And the other note on that as well is I say it’s like an artery board right? If you said to someone, how are you more likely to hit the gold in the middle will shoot more arrows, like it’s as simple as that you can shoot more arrows or you can bring the target closer. So if you want to bring the target closer, then create a conversation, not just an automation and then secondly, you know she more arrows issue or multiple channels like you say your problem have communication may be different someone else someone else might be like, Oh my god, they sent me a voicemail on my phone. Wow, I can’t believe they’ve done that. Yeah. So it’s different for everyone.
Tyler Jorgenson 25:09
Yeah, it is. Yeah, absolutely. And I think that the big thing is that there’s not one perfect arrow to understand that you’ve got to use, you got to deploy just more arrows. It’s not like, Oh, you switch your entire business to SMS. Like don’t don’t abandon email, just realize there’s other things too. So Paul, I’m a big believer, first of all two things. hope everybody goes and learns more about Paul over at amplify, see comm.com. But Paul, what is what’s one item on your personal bucket list that you’re going to accomplish in the next 12 months.
Paul Ace 25:40
Our big thing on a bucket list is to move house into the house that we really want and have a mancave in that house with a bar, a pool table, a stage in there as well for to put a band in there and then have a projector screen on the wall where we can basically move the room around to do whatever it needs to do and my wife is also a designer. So she’s already carried the whole thing got for me for Christmas so we can see how it looks. It’s gonna be like aces bar. Oh, I
Tyler Jorgenson 26:12
love it. And so is that going to be mostly for performing you’re gonna be watching something like football What do you need? What are you gonna be doing?
Paul Ace 26:19
Just you know when we get out of this good old fashioned thing called lockdown to be able to have people round a lot more where like the the pool table will be multisports table so we can have like poor ping pong or those kind of things and just have people and you know, again the conversation right and i think probably now more than ever and I don’t know you know how it’s been in America but like in the UK, obviously we’ve been in I think this is the third or fourth lockdown so people are craving to meet people so much more so to have a space where I can say hey guys come around it’s gonna be awesome that’s really what it’s for.
Tyler Jorgenson 26:58
Love that man. That’s awesome. So everybody I really hope you go and learn more about Paul over at amplify c calm calm Paul really appreciate you coming on the show sharing your journey teaching us a little bit about conversational commerce about the opportunities in that space. And now my biz ninjas wherever you are dialing in tuning in watching or listening from it’s your turn to go out and do something. Thank you for tuning in to biz ninja entrepreneur radio. What you didn’t hear was one more very important question that Tyler asks each guest if you want to be a fly on the wall when the real secrets are shared, go to biz ninja.com slash VIP and get your access today. Remember to subscribe so that you don’t miss any future episodes and are one last favor if this episode was meaningful to you. Please share this podcast with a fellow entrepreneur so they can grow along with us is ninjas. It’s your turn to go out and do something