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In marketing and in business, decision-making comes from looking at the numbers – as though you’re an “investor” in your company (shoutout to Alex Charfen’s Billionaire Code for this rhetoric!).
I’ve successfully built a company where I’m completely removed from the day-to-day, which means I’m more disconnected than ever before… My high-level decisions have nowhere to stem from – except the numbers. (And that’s how it should be.)
Here’s where the “investor mindset” comes in.
In this episode, I’m detailing my transition into thinking about my company as an “investor” – which means I’m talking all about the most important internal report we’ve created, to date.
Here’s a few highlights from the episode…
- What I’m doing differently as an Investor in my company
- What’s included in the “master report” (i.e. the Hirsh Marketing Bible) that makes this possible
- How I’m planning for billionaire status (thanks to Alex Charfen)
If you love this episode, please share inside your stories and tag @emilyhirsh for a shoutout!
NOTE – Listen to episode 59, “My journey from $1M to $3M,” for details about the highs and lows.
[4:45] Marketing is about the numbers, yes. But so is everything else.
[6:40] The “master report” I’m obsessed with right now. (The Hirsh Marketing Bible.)
[8:58] If you don’t know the numbers, how can you discover the problems? You can’t.
[13:46] How to get to billionaire status (thank you Alex Charfen)
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I’m Emily Hirsh, and this is The Hirsh Marketing Underground Podcast. Attention innovators, influencers, creators and game-changing entrepreneurs. Your internet domination begins right here.
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In today’s episode, I am sharing with you more of a team sharing, CEO sharing, personal piece. I’ve actually gotten so much request from you guys to do more of this, so I will try to include this, and I want to be aware of the fact that this is a marketing podcast, but I can’t tell you, every time I release an episode specifically about team, we get so much request for more of this, and so I wanted to share this with you guys. I know that a lot of people come to me and ask, “How did you build this? How did you build your team? How did you build the systems? How did you get to where you are?” I recently released the podcast of my journey from $1M to $3M [episode 59].
If you haven’t listened to that, it’s a really, really good one. I got super transparent with what was great, what was not great, where my struggles were, so definitely go back a few episodes and listen to that. And today, I’m going to talk to you about how I am viewing my company now, and so much has changed in the last year, but especially in the last four to six months.
I basically look at my company as an investor now. And I have to really credit Alex Charfen, because this comes from his Billionaire Code graph, chart that he has. And one of the levels is investor, and I believe it’s $10-30 million. I might be wrong, it might be $30 million plus.
I think it’s $10-30 million. But I recently did a consulting day with him, or a half-day with him, and he really opened my eyes to this, and so what does this mean? Let’s dive deep into this. By saying that I look at my company as an investor now, it means that I have built a company and an org chart where I am pretty removed.
I have four levels between me and somebody managing client ads as an ads manager at our base, foundation level in our company. Four levels of people. Three different people in between me and them in our company org chart. I only have two people who directly report to me: my COO and my executive assistant.
That’s it. Those are the only people I do one-on-one meetings with, the only people who really bring me information in the company. I obviously know what’s going on from team meetings, like our team huddle, but I don’t directly communicate and work with people in the day-to-day of what the majority goes on in our company, and it’s the coolest thing.
Let me tell you, it’s so cool. I spend all my day either doing high level brainstorming, planning, or doing content creation, really. My entire day-to-day is content creation, so it’s really cool, but you also feel disconnected in terms of what’s going on, and so how do you make decisions anymore if you’re not in the day-to-day?
You don’t see the problems, you don’t see the good, you have to still make decisions, and so what Alex said is, he said, “Emily, you have to look at everything as an investor. Yes, you want to have that connection with people, but even more so than that, you want to look at the numbers. How much money is that person making you in the company? What is and isn’t working number-wise in the company?”
And so here’s what we did to do this. It’s been [really a] mindset shift for me, is, everything I need is just data to look at, because then I can go in, and I can make decisions. I can see what is and isn’t working, things come to light. And I think at any level you can start to think like this, but it’s been a shift for me, because I am not in the day-to-day anymore, so I don’t see the problems, and I don’t see what is and isn’t working, because I’m not experiencing it first-hand.
But I have to create a way so I still know, and I still see it, and this is true with marketing, this is true with your team, this is true with anything you do in business, it’s really numbers. That’s why I’m so obsessed with marketing, which it ultimately is just numbers, and you need to be able to make decisions off of hard data and information to back it.
So what we did is, first of all, I looked at every department, and I figured out all the metrics that I wanted reported. Not that I always needed to look at these metrics; a lot of times I have specific meetings, like a finance meeting, a sales meeting, a marketing meeting, to look at specific metrics, but I need them to always be there and be tracked, so that I can go in at any time if there is a problem, and make quick decisions as the CEO.
So I went through every department. I went through our HR department, and I figured what are the metrics I needed to see. So, how many team members added this month? How many lost? What’s our team retention rate? How many resumes were reviewed? What positions do we have open? So that I can, at any time, go in, review that, okay I’m clear, I know what’s going on, and I’m good, and I can probably look at it in 20 minutes or less, and make a decision if need be.
In our marketing department, how many leads? What’s our open rates? What’s our list size? What’s our ad spend? How many applications? What’s the cost per application that we got for a client? Podcast downloads? All of those things, I need metrics, I need them in a clear spot, I need to be able to go look at them at any time to make decisions, and also pull them up on our monthly internal team marketing meeting.
So obviously this is a marketing podcast. We could dive a little deeper into that, but if you worked with our team, you would know, and if you do work with us, you do know we are all about that reporting. Looking at reporting weekly, we send that weekly report. It has all those numbers. Everybody needs that, and not only their marketing, but across their entire business, because you as a CEO have to get to a place where you look at your company just as investor.
So I then brought that across to our ads department, and I said, “Okay, what I need to know is,” Every single client account I needed, I made a sheet.
It has every client account, it has how much that client paid last month, it has how much we spent on images for that client, from our design team, how much we spent on copywriting that month from our design team, how much the client spent in ad spend, and then the ads manager that managed that account, and how much we pay them.
And now I have this master document that’s literally my Bible right now, I’m obsessed with it, that tells me exactly how much money we made from all the clients each month, the exact ROI that I got out of those accounts as a business owner, from images to copy, down to the ads manager’s salary.
Also I can see how much money each ads manager is managing, because that’s something we’re really focused on, as we bring in these bigger clients, we want to make sure it’s evenly spread how much ads managers are managing in terms of ad spend, so I can quickly see that.
We also added in there the clients’ ROI, so I can see how much average ROI between all the clients the ads manager made, and then the ads team, because I have three individual ads teams that are managed by a senior strategist in my company.
So we can see the top ads manager who had the best ROI last month, who had the most ad spend managed, who had the best internal team ROI, who made our company the most money, and then we can see which ads team had the best ROI, and which ads team had the most ad spend that they managed.
All of this data is like gold, and it took us a little bit to compile it all into one place, but now it’s pretty automated, that it’s all in there, and then month over month we’re able to see that.
I am also able to see what’s our client average payment, so what’s the average payment that a client paid, because if you listened to my podcast episode on the $1M to $3M [episode 59], we’ve been trying to get that up because of our margins, and so I’m monitoring that very closely every single month, and so that’s how this document started, and then it just got way added to.
And so I can go in at any time and look at this, and I just did this for last month, and I went in, and I could quickly see, “Hey, look, this client’s ROI in terms of image and copy expense is way off. Why did we spend this much on copy?” And then, “This specific team had the lowest internal ROI for me as a business owner, with creative resources, so what’s going on here? Can we better streamline this and fix this, because that’s a problem.”
I would not know that if I didn’t have these numbers. There would just be like, “Hmm, I wonder what the problem is, or if there was a problem with numbers.” And so I have to know that to be able to make decisions. I could also come in and see individually how much ROI and money specific people in the company are making me, which obviously will help me when it comes time to give them a raise or promote them, because I can see their performance, and directly what I can afford to pay them as a business owner.
So without that information, how could I possibly make decisions? And so that spreadsheet was a huge way for me to say, “Okay, now ,” … obviously I see my org chart as people I’m connected to, and I love them as people, but I also want to look at it as numbers, and I want to see how each ads manager … they will have metrics attached to them.
How many client accounts are they managing? How much ad spend are they managing? How many funnels are they managing? How much ROI do they bring in? How much do they cost us? All of those numbers, I need to quickly be able to get so I can make decisions, and so I can see problems.
And actually, I’m not in charge of finding these problems, as our operations manager of the ads team has the job every month of analyzing this, and then saying, “Here’s the changes I’m making based on these numbers.” So I have the option to go look at the spreadsheet, and I do because I love it, but I also have a system in place so that somebody else on my team looks at the spreadsheet and makes changes based on the information monthly, on the spreadsheet, so we can see problems.
This is so true with business. If you don’t know your numbers, if you don’t know all of the data and all of the numbers, how can you possibly make decisions to improve things, or how can you possibly find problems that are in your business if you don’t know your numbers? Otherwise you’re just guessing, you’re speculating, you’re throwing things out there, emotion is attached to it. And so, I have completely shifted my perspective to, if I’m an investor in this business, all I care about are the numbers, and client retention rate, and client average payment, and how much money each team member makes me, and the metrics that I measure as success in the company.
It’s so cool, because if you go to The Hirsh Process, and Step 1 is strategize, and the question we ask is, what does success mean for your marketing, and for your ads? And that means clearly defining metrics of how much money do I need to spend? How much money will I make? What could I pay cost per lead? What could I pay to acquire a customer?
It’s the same thing in your business across all departments and all things. It’s what would success look like? What do you need to hit your numbers, and hit your goals, and grow your business and fix the problems? And if you know those numbers … I’m getting so excited talking about this, because it’s so good, and I hope this helps you guys, because it’s so good.
If you know your numbers then you can find issues and you can fix them. Just like with your funnel, if you know your numbers of your landing page, and your emails, and your sales conversion, and your cost per lead, and your ad spend, and your ROI, then you can make decisions off of those; you can find the holes in your funnel.
You also can find the holes in your business, and so we can look and say, “Hey, look, this ads team, they have significantly less clients than this one. What’s going on here?” We wouldn’t be able to do this without the data, and so I, after that conversation with Alex Charfen, and really I’ve been moving towards this more and more, because it’s been a shift, an uncomfortable shift for me, where I was like, “I don’t know what’s happening in my business anymore. I have to figure out how to be informed, but not be involved in the day-to-day, and just let my team do their thing.”
And this is how you do it. You look at your business as an investor, and you make sure you’ve clearly defined all of the metrics that you need, from marketing to HR, to your delivery, to your internal processes. Whatever it is for your business. It’s going to be different for everybody.
What are the metrics you need to know? What defines success? And then are those being very clearly and consistently documented so that you as a CEO can make decisions, find holes, find gaps, find issues, and see what is working, and let’s do more of that.
So hopefully that helped you guys. It was fun to share that. It’s so fun to share my journey growing, and I feel like looking at that Billionaire Code, you have to start becoming the CEO that you need to be for that $10 million+ dollar company when you’re not there yet, in order to get there.
That’s been my experience. What do I need to change in what I’m doing in my mindset to get to the next level, because I will have to keep changing to be the leader for my entire team, that will not only lead them, but also get our company to where it needs to go, and be able to grow.
So if you ever want to work with Team Hirsh, you can go to HelpMyStrategy.com and apply to work with us. We are by far the best team and marketing team out there in the influencer space, and I will own that. We have just been able to be on the back end of some super exciting client accounts that I’m not even allowed to share the name of lately, and it’s been just such an honor to witness my team just serving these people.
And they’re able to do that, because I have been able to remove myself from the day-to-day and be that high level leader that they need. So if you loved this, I’d also love to know, share on Instagram story and tag me, that’s my favorite way to see that you’re listening to the podcast, that you liked hearing about this, because I do want to do content like this, only if you guys want it.
Thanks so much for listening today guys, I’ll see you next time.
Thanks for listening to the Hirsh Marketing Underground Podcast. Go behind the scenes of multi-million dollar ad campaigns and strategies, dive deep into The Hirsh Process, and listen to our most popular episodes over at HirshMarketingUnderground.com.
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