Why I Won't WordPress Anymore (A HighLevel Perspective)

Episode 77 May 05, 2023 00:39:23
Why I Won't WordPress Anymore (A HighLevel Perspective)
The Agency Hour
Why I Won't WordPress Anymore (A HighLevel Perspective)

May 05 2023 | 00:39:23


Hosted By

Troy Dean Johnny Flash

Show Notes

This week, we have a special treat for you on The Agency Hour Podcast - Shaun Clark, the brilliant Co-Founder of HighLevel, is joining us to talk about a topic that is sure to raise some eyebrows. That's right, we're tackling the controversial subject of Why Troy Dean won't use WordPress anymore.

But that's just the tip of the iceberg. We'll also be delving deep into the process of owning leads through the entire lifecycle, as well as creating a world that you control in terms of community as well as the power of pre-build proposals and creating content using AI.

And that's not all - brace yourselves for some exciting insights into the radical changes that are coming to HighLevel.

Are you getting paid to close clients? Right now, we’re guaranteeing you can GET PAID to close 8 new clients in the next 30 days. 

Click here If you’d like to chat with our team about how you can get paid to close.  https://start.agencymavericks.com/get-paid-to-close-organic 


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Episode Transcript

Speaker 0 00:00:00 To start a new website now. And I'm a WordPress guy, right? I've been using WordPress since 2007. I would find it really difficult to open a hosting account, install WordPress, because I know that I'm just gonna come up against headache after headache and things are gonna break. I would probably just do it all in high level. Welcome to the Agency Hour podcast. This week we are joined by Sean Clark, co-founder of High Level. In this episode, we discuss why I won't WordPress anymore. That's right. We explore the process of owning leads through the entire lifecycle, creating a world that you control in terms of community pre-built proposals, creating content using ai, and all of the exciting radical changes that are coming to high level. I'm Troy Dean. Stay with us. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome to the Agency Hour, the 180, Sean Clark from High Level. Hey, Sean, how are you? Speaker 2 00:00:53 Hey, thanks for having me. It's great to be here. Speaker 0 00:00:55 Excellent. Do you, when you're on podcast or webinars, do you like when, when the record button hits, do you kind of put on your voice? Do you put on your, well now I'm on in someone's podcast or someone's webinar, and you kind of put on a bit of a perform. I noticed that I do that, Speaker 2 00:01:07 I do the same cheesy intro, but other than that, no. Then I just fall apart after that. I, that's all I got. <laugh>. Speaker 0 00:01:12 Excellent. What is, what is the cheesy intro? Oh, like, Speaker 2 00:01:14 Hey, like, great, thanks for having me. Great to be here. I don't know. That's like, right. Speaker 0 00:01:18 And then you just, Speaker 2 00:01:19 It's always the same thing. Cause I, that's all I got. I got one line for everything in life. Speaker 0 00:01:23 That's it. And then we're just wing it from there on in. Now, for those who've been living under a rock for the last three years, uh, I know you've told this story a hundred times, you've at least told it a hundred times to me. Uh, who are you and <laugh>? Who are you and what is high level and how did it start? What is it all about? Speaker 2 00:01:39 Yeah, I mean, I think these days actually, so high level, you know, I used to say, well, it's all in one sales and marketing platform kind of thing. But I actually think today it is, it is sort of a revolution in the making where we're helping people, uh, start businesses, make a lot of money, um, scale up their existing businesses in a way that they never thought possible. Um, all through, all through software, certainly, but more importantly, enabling them to use that software to, to, to, to create a business, um, versus just use a tool. I think that's really what's different about us, um, these days more than almost anything. Um, and I got started because some crazy marketing agency dude called me and said, I should stop selling software to small businesses, and instead I should sell software to agencies. And it turns out that agencies are these radically amazing people in the world who get very little credit for what they do because they operate mostly behind the scenes. But once you know that, um, you can, then you, you can really start to peel back the onion and, and help help those people. And if you really wanna help small businesses, you really wanna help agencies because truly, those are the people that are doing the work behind the scenes that make those small businesses successful by and large. Speaker 0 00:02:42 Yeah, a hundred percent. I mean, I, I've always thought of agencies as a distribution channel for what you do. Like we, we impact agencies who then go out and impact their small businesses. And the, no, I feel like the impact that we have is magnified because our channel is agencies. We only deal with agencies, and then they pass that on. They pay it forward, if you like. So, um, you know, I'm just gonna give this some context for people who are listening. If you imagine something like Infusionsoft, HubSpot, active campaign, sharps, bring all those kind of marketing automation, pipe drive, all those sales, uh, tools, Calendly, ClickFunnels, uh, WordPress for blogging. If you imagine all of those things rolled into one hosted software as a service platform that you can use for your own agency, but you can also resell as managed services to your clients. Or you can white label the thing and sell it as a SaaS platform to your small business customers. Right. Speaker 2 00:03:44 Beautiful. There you go. That is definitely a good nuts and bolts way to describe us. Speaker 0 00:03:47 You should hire me, Sean. Uh, recurring revenue is <laugh>. Recurring revenue is the holy grail of all business models. We know that. I've been saying that for over 10 years now because it gives you predictability, gives you cash flow, allows you to understand when you can hire someone because you've got that predictable, uh, predictable cash flow coming in. And the problem with the agency model, as we know, is that, um, most, you know, the lifespan of a client is sort of three to six months working with an agency. And then they'll fire them because they're not happy for whatever reason. And so you, if whatever occurring revenue you build up, you're always dealing with churn. Whereas the software piece with high level, if you're selling software, it becomes really sticky and it's, you know, harder for the client to cancel. So even if they cancel the managed service side of it, you've still got 'em as a software customer. Speaker 2 00:04:31 So you don't even really need me here. You got it. There Speaker 0 00:04:33 You go. Uh, I wanna talk about some new features coming out because it does feel like, you know, there once was a time where click up was saying that there one app to kill them all. And I feel like, and I know high level's not gonna move into the project management space, I don't think, but in terms of sales and right, in terms of sales and marketing, what are, what are, it feels like there are new features coming out every week. Um, what's it being, I wanna talk about the features in a minute, but first of all, I wanna talk about what, what's that being driven by, like the decision to roll out these features? What's that being driven by and when do you kind of, are you thinking, okay, well that's enough for now. Let's just take a breath for a quarter and not do anything new, or like what's the cadence? Speaker 2 00:05:16 Yeah, so I mean, definitely not gonna take a breath anytime soon. Um, I would say the biggest thing that's driven us to this point is our, our customers, our direct customers, the agencies we serve. And, you know, we've long since taken the position that we, we sort of, we say, you know, sell 'em what they want, give 'em what they need. So we, we sort of feel like we're in this business of, if the, if there's a shiny object out there that we can use to catch an agency's attention, we're gonna build it and have it as part of the app. But once you walk in the door, we really want to get you onto the fact that the model that probably brought you to us is not the model you want going forward. If you wanna make a lot more money and have a lot more scalable business, heck, even if you take the same amount of money, but you just wanna go on vacation someday mm-hmm. Speaker 2 00:05:57 <affirmative>, it's a radically different world that we can help you get to. Right. Um, now I will say we are moving, we're definitely starting to shift because we are definitely running out of features that agencies can name that are big. So lots of enhancements and existing feature sets and all that, but real big rocks, essentially the way I think about it, um, of features, you know, we'll have communities out this, uh, quarter, which is a great example of an, I think of very much as an agency centric feature. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. But what's fun about that is it's opening the door to moving into the SMB feature set. And this really speaks to that business model. We're trying to help people grow because yeah, it's awesome that we've replaced all your tools, but how can we replace all the small businesses tools? And now we're getting into stuff like invoicing and estimates and payments and mobile, mobile app payments and stuff. That really is not necessarily something even the agency will ever use. You know, maybe you're not running around collecting money on an iPhone, um, you know, tacking a card against the iPhone kind of thing, but all of your clients do this and today maybe using other products, but that's the whole point here. Why are they not using your product? And so we're starting to build out all of that stuff and I think that's kind of a really exciting change in our direction. Speaker 0 00:07:02 It's funny because we moved, we bought a house recently and before we moved in, we've been doing some renovations in the backyard, in the front yard. We've moved in now, but the renovations are still going on. Tradies are coming out the house. Oh no. Speaker 2 00:07:11 That works. Speaker 0 00:07:11 Works on a regular basis. And they all use this thing called service mate, which is SM eight is kind of the abbreviation. Yeah. And I inter I interact with us. What happens is I get a text message that says, Hey, John's on his way, uh, you know, blah, blah, blah, reply here, and it's a link to service mate, which then opens a little chat, kind of like a chat widget in my phone. And I, I'm looking at it going, this could be high level. I'm surprised if it's not driven by high level, but if it's not, it could be, I wouldn't use that as an agency owner, but I, I know tons of small business customers that would use that feature. And if it's integrated with their sales pipeline and their incoming conversations off their li cuz what I get on the websites and I live chat people on the, on their website and then I'm sure that, and then they turn up and they're processing the payment with the Square app on the phone. And I'm looking at 'em going, your admin's a nightmare dude, cuz you, you are using like five or six things to try and keep this thing going. Um, so is is that kind of the space that you are looking to move into? Right, exactly. Speaker 2 00:08:09 You got it. So it's, it's just that simple idea that all of those features were really boring and were already in existence before we showed up. Right. So we had to beat a path to those features through every marketing feature we could imagine, and all the customer communications and all the agency specific stuff. So we've done a lot of that and most of that. And now we're moving on to that exact thing, which is, you know, again, what's fun about it is we've always purposely start purposely started with the front door and, and we've left the back, the back of the house to, to the end. Because now exactly like you said, we're bringing the lead in to start with and now it's just owning them all the way through that life cycle and Yeah, we'll have, so like the, the tap to pay that, that's a perfect example. Speaker 2 00:08:51 I had a guy come out you square at my house. Same thing. I mean, why you square when you can just use, you know, high level or whatever white level, uh, provider. And here's the great part about it, it's simple, it's customer service. That person says, I have a question about this. I want to ask the local person who, who sold this, you know, who sold this to me. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and I, and that's why I chose 'em cuz they were local versus square. I gotta, I gotta call that, like that tollfree number and I gotta wait on hold or I gotta open that ticket thing. It's like, oh, I wanna pain in the butt. I'm a plumber, I'm a whatever. I'm this kind of tradie, I gotta get back out, you know, to the next job or I'm not getting paid. It's much easier to deal with that local agency for this kind of stuff versus calling some 800 number. Speaker 0 00:09:28 Totally. Um, oh, so much to unpack here, man. I have all the questions. Sean. Uh, let's talk about the features coming up over the next quarter just to get people excited. I've got a couple of questions around that. So hit me. What's happening in, what's happening in blogging? So Speaker 2 00:09:42 We have blogging now. So for those of you who are wondering, we have full blogging now, but we're upgrading it essentially to more of a first class builder experience. This is very much the way that, um, somebody like a HubSpot would do blogging. So we're mm-hmm. <affirmative> essentially doing it the exact same way. And it's just kind of making it a more first class experience. Today we use it as an element inside the funnel builder, and this is really allowing it to kind of pull out on its own, into its own own builder. And this is, I mean this is like a radical enhancement, but I'd say more or less it's, it's an enhancement. It has some SEO capabilities and things that our current one doesn't have mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Um, but otherwise it's just a really cool enhancement on the builder so that, that is blogging essentially for the, for the quarter. Speaker 0 00:10:20 One of, one of the things that I was talking to Max about before you turned up pre-show is I, I, I'm gonna start some new projects. I've got a studio here. We do some music projects and stuff. I'm also gonna start my own little private coaching thing just to coach other coaches who coach coaches. Uh, cuz that's fun. And, uh, um, if I was to start a new website now, and I'm a WordPress guy, right? I've been using WordPress since 2007. I would find it really difficult mm-hmm. <affirmative> to open a hosting account, install WordPress because I know that I'm just gonna come up against headache after headache and things are gonna break. I would probably just do it all in high level. And the, probably the number one reason I would do it is because the integration between something like blogging funnels, forms and calendars. Like I drag an element into the page and choose the calendar I wanna show. And all of that is integrated into the CRM and the customer record and the, the deal pipeline. It's a no. Like, I'm not, I'm not trying to spook, but what I'm, I am, I guess what I'm spooking here is like, you know, I don't 10, 11, 13 word Speaker 2 00:11:25 Word, Speaker 0 00:11:26 13, 14 years of WordPress experience and I'm like, I, I just can't, I just can't make a case for it anymore. It's just so disconnected. Right. Um, yeah. Speaker 2 00:11:34 And, and you know, I we, you know, oddly enough we actually have WordPress hosting, imagine that as a feature. Um, and, and we do sort of like a, because kind of a nod to the past of what you're saying, right? Um, and also a nod to those who aren't just sort of religious about it, <laugh>. Um, but I would say that's true, right? You, you, if you, it's if, if for whatever reason you are not an Elementor fanatic mm-hmm. <affirmative>, um, you know, and that's like the only thing you can use if you're open to something else. It does create this big unified sort of seamless end-to-end experience where you're not having to jump in and out of apps or plug zappier in and hope it all works. Like you sort of get rid of all of the, uh, uh, the ins and outs like that and you create just a much more se seamless process. Speaker 0 00:12:15 If I never have to look at Zapier again, man, it'll be too soon. Um, because, you know, one of the reasons that we ended up with high level and the journey for us was like Infusionsoft and 13 other apps and then we went to HubSpot to try and minimize the apps and ended up with more and costing us 50 grand a year. And then we come to high level <laugh>, right? And, and the reason we came to high level, I'm gonna look at your browser tabs open there, it's just disturbing. Uh, the reason we came to high level is because I wanna minimize the amount of browser tabs I have open, not only in my browser, but in my head. It's like, I don't wanna have to think about which website do I need to go to to track that thing. I just want to have it all in one place. And, um, well there's Speaker 2 00:12:51 A lot of stuff there also that you can automate when it's all like that. So like, think about things like, um, like attribution. So you're running, you're running traffic to, you know, content and that traffic's coming from different places and then later on down the road it's converting into leads and into your sales pipeline and eventually you're hopefully selling stuff, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And then at the end of it all, you wanna sort of say, wait, where am I getting the best traffic from? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And so when it's all seamless like this, you can actually do ROI attribution and you can say, well this amount like this, this, these sales, which I consider the best sales for whatever reason cuz they're more money or they're more profitable products or whatever, I can see that they were tied all the way back to that ad or that traffic source mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And that's very powerful cuz now, you know, just dump more money in that traffic source and out pops the type of sales that you're, you're looking for versus trying to guess or weed through your seven different software platforms who probably aren't handing that data off nicely. Speaker 0 00:13:46 Correct. To each. Correct. And, you know, if there's one, one thing that I wasn't even really aware of but blew my mind when we got into high level is you look at a customer record card and you can see the journey that that person's taken on your Oh yeah, that's fine on your website or your funnels where the high level code is. Right? And you go, all right, so they engaged with that thing, they downloaded that lead magnet, then there was a text, then there was a call, then there was an email, then they booked in, then they had the call, then they converted. It's like, that's customer journey mapping based on real data, not based on some kind of workshop theory that people come up with. Because all, all those workshops are great in theory, but unless you've actually got the data on how customers are interacting with your content and your team, then you, you're kind of guessing. And I've never been able to find that even in, in the HubSpot world, like I've never been able to find because things are so disconnected. Right. So, um, Speaker 2 00:14:31 I I to I would totally agree with that. You're Speaker 0 00:14:33 Absolutely, yeah. Okay. So, so blog that's blogging. What else is coming out? Stop blog this quarter. Speaker 2 00:14:36 All right, so let's jump into communities cuz that's exciting. It's very exciting out there using like a circle. So, or something we Speaker 0 00:14:42 Do, we use, but Speaker 2 00:14:43 Basically this is, I think the, I think the root, the root version of this was, Hey, I have Facebook groups. I don't like them because, you know, mark Zuckerberg is controlling my world mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And so I want to have a world where I control it. And so that's literally where communities came from. So now we are adding communities. So as you can see, this looks very similar to some other community products, which is not, um, certainly by design, we're very inspired by them. It'll be part of our membership. So we have a full memberships builder, like a Cajabi or whatever, teachable or something. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Um, so communities sort of seem like a, are kind of a natural plug into that mm-hmm. <affirmative> actually though, I, I, we actually got a two for one special on here. I don't have a way to sh I don't, well I, I'm sure I could show it. Speaker 2 00:15:19 I don't know how to do it at the moment. But, um, we're also launching a customer portal. So the idea is that if you serve back to the tradies, if you get a bill from the trad and they says, Hey, go on my web website and pay the invoice, the, the customer portal will serve for that. Or can you go upload pictures of your, you know, your busted toilet or whatever it might be. Like, you can go do that. But membership, I'm sorry, communities will be part of that. Um, and they'll be sort of one of the first items that we launch. But, um, so we'll get that, but we also get this really cool community thing so people can start to kind of create their own private groups. Speaker 0 00:15:52 Wow. Um, your process looks like that. You come up with an idea, you design an interface, then you develop it. Is that Yep. Speaker 2 00:15:58 Yeah. Yeah. Well, mostly what it is actually is we look at the ideas list, we look at the top voted items by our customers, and then we take those off and we've, we go off in the world and we say, Hey, well what are you currently doing to fix, to satisfy this need? And we look at the products that are out in market and then we say, okay, cool. Um, let's not reinvent the steering wheel. You know, if if it's round, it works, it's been around for a long time, let's create our version of it and then boom, we come out with, um, essentially the, the same thing. Um, and with the same sort of rough functions and features mostly designed around what, uh, what our customers have told us are the most important things. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, um, as far as that feature goes, Speaker 0 00:16:36 Just on blogging and communities, how customizable is this stuff in terms of the design? Speaker 2 00:16:41 So an, I mean, all, we always MVP this stuff. So the problem with that is like, when you ask these questions, it's sort of like a very staticy kind of like, like it assumes a static state. So the, the, the reality is it'll be as customizable as people want, but you can kind of see we've learned a thing or two, um, over the years. And so you can see out of the gate, we're already asking about branding colors and favorite icons and cover images and some of this other stuff. So there'll be some basic customizations outta the gate. And then I suspect, we'll, we'll sort of allow custom CSS and JavaScript for those people who just wanna shoot to the advanced, you know, kind of super custom world. And then subsequent from there, we'll no doubt come out with themes and uh, and sort of enhance that. And we did this with memberships as well. They started off as like one theme. That's all she wrote. And now I think they've got three or four, and now you can customize like 40 different attributes. So eventually we'll go probably that deep here as well. Speaker 0 00:17:30 Uh, my insight about this stuff over the years is that you should just go with what happens out of the box. Because every minute you spend waste, every minute you waste trying to customize it is a minute you're not spending on acquiring more customers. So I don't customize shit these days. I'm like, great, it look right outta the box. It works on mobile, let's go. Speaker 2 00:17:47 I'm with you, I'm with you. But you know, this is, you know, you run into, you know, this, this is selling what they want, give 'em what they need, right. So yeah, a hundred percent Speaker 0 00:17:54 People Speaker 2 00:17:54 Say, oh, I absolutely can't move forward without being able to change the font. Yeah. You know, spacing or something, you know, like, all right, so you give 'em the darn font spacing, one person uses it and then you move on. Yeah, Speaker 0 00:18:04 That's right. Uh, alright, so that's blogging, that's communities, what else? <laugh>. Okay. Speaker 2 00:18:08 Uh, how about proposals? This is designed sort of to really solve for two use cases, right? So one use case is, um, uh, I need to create a proposal because I'm an agency or a service business where I'm basically, and I think of the difference between proposals and estimates as really a proposal is a bunch of fluffy stuff, plus the estimate at the bottom, showing you what you're actually gonna buy. And then the estimate is the kind of thing you get from the plumber because you know what a toilet replacement is and you don't need a song to dance about it. But, so anyways, here's how that would work. So you come in, I don't know, select recipients isn't all that exciting. Cool. So you got the proposal builder again, full builder situation here. Um, this one's model after something like a Panda doc or something mm-hmm. Speaker 2 00:18:49 <affirmative>. Um, so you be able to come in, build this thing out, you build your great proposal, and then eventually you throw in, here we go, the estimate element mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And then that becomes where you're really pricing out your packages, you're adding discounts and taxes, payment schedules if you want to do like, you know, uh, whatever, break it up into payments, that kind of thing. Uh, and and so forth and so on. And then you're actually able to then send this out either again as a full proposal or just as the estimate piece. It's all in one spot. Speaker 0 00:19:17 Fantastic. So again, as an agency, this replaces something like Better Proposals or Bid Sketch or any of those tools. And as a small business customer, it replaces, so the trade, so the agency can use it to sign the trade in, then the trade can use it to sign their customers. Speaker 2 00:19:31 Yep. And so we'll have QuickBooks online integration, uh, for this this quarter. And uh, by votes it looks like we'll have zero out next quarter, which I think you probably use, if I had to guess. Speaker 0 00:19:41 Yep. It's Australia, it's a kind of an Australian New Zealand centric product. Exactly. Wow. Super interesting. Um, anything else? I mean, I feel Speaker 2 00:19:49 Likes Oh yeah, I mean, we've got, oh, well, I mean, let's see here. We should go. We should go back to Figma and just, just poke around. You know, this is like, to me this is like, kind of like, it's like being to open Christmas presents early. Speaker 0 00:19:59 Well actually let's talk about, let's talk. That's what you're gonna get. Let's talk about ai. Let's, let's talk about chat. G P T. Oh, yeah. Uh, Speaker 2 00:20:05 Yeah, sure. So, uh, well, so on the AI front, we've got the Image ai, which is coming out. Speaker 0 00:20:11 Max and I were playing around with Mid Journey yesterday. It's the first time I've used Mid Journey yesterday and more. Oh yeah, more. What'd you think? Far? Unbelievable. That thing is just incredible. I'm convinced there's a bunch of humans behind the scenes drawing those pictures because Speaker 2 00:20:24 Oh, I know, man. Isn't it incredible? Speaker 0 00:20:25 So that is just incredible. Speaker 2 00:20:27 Um, gosh, where am I? How am I gonna show this to you? Oh, but I've got, um, so what we're gonna do next week is, uh, is Launch Essential, uh, essentially the same concept, although Mid Journey is not, mid Journey is not available as a straight API yet. So we're gonna start with Doll E mm-hmm. <affirmative> cause that's available. And so we'll be able to bring that out every place in the app where you see, um, uh, like a social media posting for example, or the media library or something in the app inside the social media posting, for example. And now instead of saying, you know, use something in the media library or whatever, you can say, create image using ai. So Fancy Window pops up, you tell it what you want, you pick a, a image style or whatever, and boom, cute puppies pop out, and then you choose your puppy jack's. Speaker 2 00:21:11 That's ridiculous, isn't it? And that's it. And you're good to go. So then that's it. And then it also drops in. So we have a new section already launched because we have content AI on the, um, so I guess it, for those of you who don't know, we have content AI generation four, the text already across the whole app. Um, so there's a section now where it shows you all of the content that you've generated, um, already, and, and so you can go back and like, use it later, right? And so the same thing goes for images, of course. Um, so you'll be able to come back in here and see all that. Uh, and then of course, um, in the media library, which we have across the app, um, we've added this ability to hit Create image using ai. And now you can use AI to create images same way you just saw, but into the media library it goes versus a social media post. Speaker 0 00:21:49 Wow. How do you, how do you communicate? Because I know every time I log in a high level, there's something new that I haven't, I'm not aware of, right? Because like Yeah. You know, we're all busy. How do you, how do you, what's the cadence for communicating? I know you make a hundred videos every day about stuff that's happening with high level, but how do you make sure the message gets through? How do you, how do you communicate that to your customers? So that, I Speaker 2 00:22:10 I I think that's impossible. So I, I mean, the problem that we run into is I just know that no matter how hard we, uh, you know, we shout and no matter what we do, there's just always gonna be a, a finite limit to the number of people that know it exists. Mm-hmm. And I think it's about fill, it's like it's getting it out first to those hardcore users who really are paying attention. And we find that those people do a decent job of then taking it out to, you know, more and more and more people. Mm-hmm. Right? Mm-hmm. And, and then from there, a lot of times, you know, just because let's just say you didn't make chainsaws yesterday, now you make chainsaw as part of your tools that you make, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, um, then it's also about, well, well that's cool, but how do you use that? Speaker 2 00:22:46 And so we rely on really our customers to come in and say, Hey, uh, I'm gonna try this out and see what I can do with it. And then from there they are really packaging it up and taking it down to another audience and saying, Hey, yeah, there's this tool, but let me show you how to use it to create this outcome. Right? So it is, it is more of a organic process. I would say that that takes sometimes months if not years. And so I still, I still run into customers now who I ran into somebody the other day said, oh, I've been there for three years. And I said, oh, would you know about this? And they said, oh no, I had no idea <laugh>. Um, so I thought, oh, well, yep. Just shows how hard it's Speaker 0 00:23:20 Because your ho the homepage on the high level website, I don't feel like it's changed in a long time. You are Speaker 2 00:23:26 Av testing a new version, just so you know. Right. But, but, but it still doesn't, and I just don't think you can do justice to the feature set. I think it's more about just saying, Hey, listen, we have what you need to be successful, come over here and then we'll talk about specifics later. <laugh> Speaker 0 00:23:41 Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Interesting. Um, and also I think, you know, what, what I like about this though is that it's a, it's a lesson for all of us is that don't spend too much time faffing about with your homepage. Just make the product freaking awesome and get it into the right customer's hands and they'll do the work for you. Speaker 2 00:23:57 Oh, absolutely. And I think that what you would really find is, you know, I, I think it's about getting, getting the right customers who can, you know, really help you evolve the features and understand the vision and all those good things, because I think that's where the value really comes in. And it's just, it's just impossible. Like these are the new mobile payment screens where you can do tap to pay, which I think are gonna be amazing. Um mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So like, that's like the complex version, but here's the simple version. It's like, Hey, 546 bucks, what do you wanna do? Tap to pay or enter the card. Okay, I'll do tap to pay, you know, blink. And for those you don't know, you can use iPhones now and you can like put the credit card on the phone. You don't need a reader anymore. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Um, and now, and that's it. Now you, now that Square Reader goes away. So this is coming out this quarter and I think it's gonna gonna be killer. Um, but, you know, yet another feature that will take time for people to, to adopt and know, know even exists. Speaker 0 00:24:47 And so it just integrates with Stripe. Is that the way it works? Yeah. Speaker 2 00:24:50 Mm-hmm. Speaker 0 00:24:51 <affirmative>, right? I mean, this is a massive pain in the ass problem to solve from a compliance point of view, right? I mean, you guys must have jumped through all sorts of hoops to get this feature. Speaker 2 00:25:01 Yeah. So we, I mean, we had to get, I mean, obviously Stripe has permission from Apple to turn it on, and then you have to go to Stripe and get them to add you to the beta to turn it on. And I'm sure eventually it'll be available to everybody. But again, the power of it will not be the feature itself, the power of it will be that it's just sitting there. Um, it's ready to use, it's easy, it's all in one spot, and it'll nicely integrate with everything else, right? So mm-hmm. <affirmative>, um, in fact, we just launched the payment received, uh, workflow automation trigger today, which allows you to do stuff that is custom whenever you get a payment. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, and, you know, we already have lots of payments for invoices and funnels and text to pay and all this other stuff. And this will nicely roll into it. But then again, as the agency, you're now able to come in and put on top of all of this your stuff that you know, is important to help your clients. Speaker 0 00:25:46 Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, how do you, um, uh, sidebar here. How, how do you educate agencies on how do use this stuff and the best practices around it? Speaker 2 00:25:58 We're about to, to do this actually, and we've started to go down this road. So a couple things. One, we just launched our first five day challenge where we're taking one feature, which is tech, which is Miscall text back, which is this thing where you call the business, they don't pick up and it automatically texts them back, the person back and says, Hey, you know, would you, would you like to book an appointment or whatever, essentially tries to capture that person so we don't lose them. Um, so we, we did our first version of that and it was awesome because people would go out and actually get customers. Cuz what we've realized is it's not about the features. So like, we have so many features now it's, they're impossible to teach. So it's really about, and honestly, nobody really judges you based on features. They, they sort of say they do, but they really judge you on, do I make money or not? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So we're coming out with a course called the SaaS Preneur course that's gonna launch in June. And it's literally that design, it's, Hey, listen, here's how you walk out your front door. Here's how you walk up to a business, here's how you sell one thing, create money for yourself, and then from there, this is how you do that 10 more times or whatever. And then, you know, continually add more features, charge more for it, and bam, now you have a SAS business. Speaker 0 00:26:59 Mm. Love it. Love it. Um, okay, so, um, what else, what other questions do I have for you, <laugh>? I have all the questions, Sean, I have all the questions. Um, in terms of the, how do you, how do you, how many features do you kind of commit to rolling out a quarter and how, and how do you manage the, the decision making like and the FOMO of going, well, I really wanna roll this out, but the team has said no, that has to wait because this stuff's more important. How do you know when you've bitten off enough in a quarter? Speaker 2 00:27:30 Yeah, so it is based on, whoa, sorry about the background noise there. That's okay. Um, it is based on, first it's just capacity. How many engineers do we have? How many existing features do we already have? And then from there it's, it's, it's really less about what I think, it's really about what our customers think. So we have a, we have an ideas list. The ideas list is, Hey, listen, if you're a customer, go in, put your idea up there or vote for, hopefully at this point, <laugh>, hopefully everyone has put out your idea that you had, maybe not, but get votes for it. And the ones that have the highest votes win. And then we just choose, we literally just go down that list and choose. And then, um, because a lot of the, these days, again, back to the fact that we have almost any feature you could imagine, um, it's really about making sure those features have all of the, all the substance that, that people need them to have in order to be effective. Speaker 2 00:28:15 Um, and then from there, we, we, what we try to do now is one big feature, a quarter, maybe two to depending, and some are in the middle of that. They could be big enhancements, which for some people probably feel like big new features, but might tack onto something we've already got. Um, but like communities is a good example. I'd say that's a big feature for us. Um, I like tap to pay and to some people that'll be a big new feature, but technically it's just an extension of payments, right? So it just all depends on who you are and how you see it. Speaker 0 00:28:42 This is all available, by the way, at ideas dot go high level.com. Is that right? Is that Yep, that's the most up to date. Okay. And Speaker 2 00:28:49 It'll show you our roadmap too. So once an idea has been pulled out and it's being worked on, you could see that. So we're very transparent. And then we have like a monthly town hall meeting where we, we invite anybody to come and then all the developers do a presentation with slides and everything of, Hey, here's what we're working on, and hey, here's where it's at, and hey, here's what we've committed to for the rest of the quarter. So we're really transparent in, you know, what we're working on and where we're at with it. Speaker 0 00:29:11 Uh, this is powered by Kenny, it's ideas dot go high level.com, and it's got all the different categories and then it's got the CanBan board of basically, you know, ideas, uh, you know, in consideration in progress Done, uh, membership Community is here. I can see. And there's lots, I mean, there's so much interaction in this stuff. There's so many votes, there's so many comments. It's a great conversation. So if you're a high level user or you're, or you're not a high level user, you wanna be part of this conversation and kind of influence what the team at high level are doing, then Ideas dot go, ideas dot go high level.com is the place to, uh, check that out. We'll put a link in the show notes to that. Um, man, the summit, talk to me about the summit coming up in October. Speaker 2 00:29:51 Yes. So we did our first one last year and you know, I I, I always have reservations about things like this cuz I don't anything about them, but it was a smash hit, um, just way bigger than we imagined it to be. And I think it, it really owed to the fact that we started from the get go of trying to make an event, not about us, but about the industry that we're in and the people that inhabit it, that have all of the expertise and provide so much value to people. I sort of, I, I sit on my team, listen, I wanna make it so that even if you hate high level for whatever reason, you'd wanna still come because the people that are gonna be there presenting are worth seeing by themselves. And so that's the way we, we looked at it and we're gonna do it again this year. Speaker 2 00:30:29 Um, we are also limiting the attendance of the event, um, to a, and I think it, I think it was 800 last year. It's 800 this year. Because specifically what we found is there's this tipping point, right, where you show up, there's big names and there's big crowds, and then you could never meet these big names because there's so many people, it's impossible to see him. Yeah. And at eight, about 800, believe it or not, if you said, Hey, I'm dying to meet Frank Kern or something, y you can meet Frank, um, he'll be there at the bar and you can talk to him and you know, you probably are not gonna get an hour and a half of the man's time, but you will get to actually meet him. And if that's your hero, then, then you get to meet your hero. And, and I think that's what's cool. Speaker 2 00:31:05 And more importantly, you also get to meet other people who are actually doing what you're doing or at maybe a stage above you or a stage behind you at the same stage you are. There's just more interaction networking. And I felt like a lot of people left that event saying, wow, I know exactly what I'm gonna go home and do right now. It's to advance my business. And that's the kind of event we're looking for. And so, yeah, we'll have it again I think in October. Um, so I think it's level up dot go high level.com with ips. Speaker 0 00:31:29 It is LevelUp dot go high level.com. It's October 23 to 26, 2023 at the Staler Hotel in Dallas, Texas. I'm hoping to be there because we're running our event in Virginia the week before. Um, hoping to get a a few days in Manhattan before I come down to Dallas for the event. If all goes well. I do have two young kids under the age of six, so can go sideways around very bit Claire, between now and then. But I am planning on being there, which is gonna be super exciting. I just wanna, this, there's a lot here, right? And a lot of people are listening to this going, okay, well this is very exciting, but how do I get started? And we've talked about this a little bit before in, I think in one of our live streams in our Facebook group. But just tell people if they wanna get started with high level, obviously we'll put, uh, a link in the show notes, then go and check it out. Yeah. But once they're in and they're established, what's the first thing they should do in like, the first seven days to start getting traction with high level so that they can see, all right, I'm, I'm gonna get an ROI on this. Speaker 2 00:32:23 Get on, get on Zoom with our onboarding team, <laugh>, we have a team of human beings, we'll get on Zoom with you and onboard you. Imagine that. And they will, they will walk you into value immediately. Now of course if you say, well, I don't like talking to people and I just wanna deal with this all myself, then what my advice is always the same, which is like, pick one thing, pick one thing that's gonna create value for you, or even better, I think honestly, your clients and go achieve that one thing. Because the idea here is to, is to, is to show yourself that, hey, listen, I can get enough value from one thing to pay the monthly fee for this because I can see the hope, but I'm not gonna sit here and waste my time trying to learn 50 things before I execute. Speaker 2 00:33:00 That's right. Take, pick one thing or two things and execute them. And you can always just keep going, right? But at least you can say, well, worst case scenario, I'm already getting sufficient value here. Um, so that's, that's the big thing. But I, I love our onboarding team. We have real people who do that. And then after you convert, we also have what's called the success team. It's like yet another group of human beings who will get on and help you, like, do anything that you want to do <laugh>. So we have lots and lots and lots of people just dying to help you get going, um, all sitting around for free. So I think that is what I would recommend these days. Speaker 0 00:33:28 It's nuts. What, what's the low hanging fruit you think for an agency? What is the most common one thing they can go and pitch to clients to, to get some clients on Speaker 2 00:33:38 Miss Call, text back, <laugh>, Speaker 0 00:33:40 Mr. Call, Speaker 2 00:33:41 Text back. Hey, do you ever look, do you ever miss phone calls? Yeah, I mean, of course you do. I mean, and you and you just looking from the consumer perspective ever call a business and they have 'em not pick up the phone. Oh, well, heck yeah. All the time. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Okay, great. Well what if when those calls hit, instead of them calling your competitor, cuz that's what they're doing, instead you're texting them back and saying, Hey, I'm on the phone with another client or whatever. People respect that, that makes you feel busy. Like, you're doing something, do you need to x? Right? And most of the time it's, you need to book an estimate or do you need to book a time to come in? Or do you need a, you know, whatever. And the answer is always yes. And then you can do a lot from there. But here's what I always say to people, if you take one missed call and turn it into a customer for 99.9% of businesses worldwide, that's worth the monthly fee right there. That one extra sale, right? Mm-hmm <affirmative>. And even if it's not, it's two, it's three. It's a very low bar and missed call, text back and get you to get to that value for that customer very quickly. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Speaker 0 00:34:29 And you can set up mis here's the thing I love about high level, right? You set up the miss call text back automation, you save it as a snapshot, you can roll that out to as many client sites as you like for the flat monthly fee. It's ridiculous. Yep. Again, I'm gonna say it again. I lose sleep on your behalf because I dunno how you do it. Uh, and you, you set that up once, you can roll that as many times as you'd like, you can just offer that as a, as a SaaS solution without doing managed services. So without doing a lot of client management work, um, what's the typical price point that you see people selling? Uh, go high level four as a SaaS. Speaker 2 00:35:01 I mean, the ones the, what we always talk about is 2 97 a month and it's simple. We can get, we can get that value, we can get you to that value anywhere. The only the people who try to undersell it, what they miss out of this equation is this day that is going to arrive where they're gonna have a hundred businesses depending on them for this product, and some of them are gonna call them every day and ask a question, whatever it might be, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, and they're gonna, and I'm, I always want enough margin in their model to have a another person besides them who can be there to answer those questions, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative> mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And so I think, you know, and so 2 97 is always that the answer, it gives you a lot of ability to, um, expand the feature set as you go. Speaker 2 00:35:40 It's, it's a price every small business pays. I mean, if you look at a power bill or an internet bill or a cell phone bill or something, they're all around that amount. And so you just become part of the mix of a price point they're very familiar with. And so if you, under, if you underprice it, you're just throwing money away for no good reason. If you go, if you go over that for your first step, then you get way too expensive. So I think it's about that price mo point where every small business can say yes to it. You can create a tremendous amount of value for that amount of money, and it's very scalable, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, it's very repeatable. It, you know, you don't, you're not doing custom work. Speaker 0 00:36:10 Yeah. 10 clients, you're at three grand a month recurring, by the way, for those listening who are going, well, that's great, but I don't wanna be tech support for high level. There are companies that will do white label tech support for your clients for a flat monthly fee, uh, which is, you know, again, very, very economical. You, you sign two or three clients and everything's paid for and you're making profit at that point, right? So it's a bit of a no-brainer. We are huge fans. Uh, we are an affiliate for high level. We promote it, we've got a lot of agencies in our ecosystem that use it. We will put our affiliate link full transparency in the show notes here, so you can go check it out. And, uh, at that point you get a 30 day trial instead of a 14 day trial with us. And you also get our snapshot loaded into your account so you can take advantage of all the automations that we've built for agencies. Uh, do, can you leak any news about any speakers at the summit yet, or is it too early? Speaker 2 00:36:59 Ooh, I think, well, I don't, I may, well, the problem with my team is they're smart enough to know that if they tell me anything, I'll tell everyone. So I don't know the answer, but if the answer is yes, they haven't told me yet, so, right. But, you know, I will, um, invariably they, they they will be big. And then of course, we're also always, always thinking about what other fun things we could do. Last year was robots this year. Um, I think we've got something to one up the robots, so, and the robots were a big hit, so, we'll, we'll see it. We're gonna have some stuff. Awesome. Speaker 0 00:37:25 Awesome. Love it. Sean Clark, thank you again for your time on the agency. I appreciate you so much and everything you do, man, keep up the good work and uh, hopefully I'll see you in, uh, in Texas. Speaker 2 00:37:35 Sounds good. Thanks guys. Talk to you later. Bye. Speaker 0 00:37:39 Hey, thanks for listening to the Agency Hour podcast and a massive thanks to Sean Clark. I always love catching up with Sean. I'm constantly being blown away by how fast they're developing the features at high level and how much it's improving. I can honestly say that if I was gonna make a new website, which I probably am, I would no longer use WordPress. And that is something I never thought I would say. I'm all in on high level. I'm looking forward to catching up the show when I'm out in the states later this year. We're going to Virginia for our mav com event in October, and then I'm really hoping to be able to attend the high level summit in Dallas as well. All right, folks, don't forget to subscribe and please share this with anyone who you think may need to hear it. Now, if you are using a high level, uh, then happy days World done, congratulations. Speaker 0 00:38:24 If you are not, I think it's fair to say that the the case is fairly strong, but if you're on the fence, you can try it free for 14 days. Now, I actually don't believe that's enough time to really dig into the power of high level and what it can do. So if you use our affiliate link, you can try it for a full 30 days for free and also get our snapshot, which includes all the automations that we've built for our agencies, hot, loaded into your account. Of course, if you sign up through our affiliate link, we get a small amount of commission, which covers the cost of my fancy coffee beans. Now, more importantly, are you getting paid to close clients right now? We are guaranteeing you can get paid to close eight new clients in the next 30 days. If you'd like to chat with our team about how that works, click the link beneath this episode. Now let's get to work.

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