Straightforward – Funnel Science

On This week’s episode of An Agency Story podcast, we have Alex Fender – founder of Funnel Science, a full service digital marketing agency based out of Plano, Texas that specializes in client success by partnering with companies to help scale up digital marketing, optimize for success metrics, and accelerate business growth.  Alex’s entrepreneurial journey started when he joined the military after finishing high school, an endeavor he had his sights on after seeing Top Gun as a young boy. It was during his time in the US Marines that Alex accidentally stumbled into entrepreneurship. He started selling car parts on eBay and soon he was making more money selling car parts than he was in the military.

Company: Funnel Science
Owners: Alex Fender
Year Started: 2012
Employees: 1 – 10

In the heart of the bustling digital marketing landscape, “An Agency Story” podcast has carved out a niche for itself, bringing to light the real, unfiltered experiences of marketing agency owners. Within this collection of entrepreneurial journeys, the episode titled “Straightforward” featuring Alex Fender, the brains behind Funnel Science, stands out for its raw insight and compelling narrative.

This episode dives deep into the essence of what it means to drive a business with data at the helm. Alex Fender’s journey from a military serviceman to the founder of a marketing analytics agency encapsulates the tenacity and ingenuity required to turn challenges into stepping stones. His unique perspective on marketing, shaped by personal hardships and an innate entrepreneurial spirit, is nothing short of inspiring. Through a candid conversation with the host, Russel Dubree, Alex shares how his early ventures into the world of e-commerce and the lessons learned from hiring and firing 50 different marketing vendors laid the groundwork for Funnel Science.

Listeners will be captivated by the humorous anecdotes, such as Alex’s unexpected success in the eBay market of car parts, and the sobering realities of navigating a business through the pandemic’s tumultuous waters. The episode is punctuated with powerful quotes that highlight Alex’s straightforward approach: “If it doesn’t make dollars, it doesn’t make sense,” underscoring the pragmatic mindset that has guided his decisions.

A significant portion of the episode is dedicated to discussing the inception of Funnel Science, a company born from frustration with the opaque nature of digital marketing practices and a desire to apply a scientific methodology to improve sales funnels. The turning point for Alex was realizing the industry’s need for transparency and accountability, leading to the development of software that revolutionized how agencies measure success.

The episode doesn’t just recount the past; it looks to the future, exploring Alex’s ongoing projects and his vision for leveraging his entrepreneurial skills in new ventures. His passion for connecting veterans with their dreams, whether in the realm of hunting or classic cars, adds a personal touch that resonates with listeners on a deeper level.

“An Agency Story” podcast invites its audience to tune into “Straightforward” not just for the strategies and insights Alex Fender shares, but for the motivational tale of resilience, adaptability, and the relentless pursuit of clarity in a field muddled by ambiguity. This episode is a beacon for current and aspiring entrepreneurs, leaving them to ponder the balance between creativity and data-driven decision-making in their own ventures.


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Show Transcript


Welcome to An Agency Story podcast where we share real stories of marketing agency owners from around the world. From the excitement of starting up the first big sale, passion, doubt, fear, freedom, and the emotional rollercoaster of growth, hear it all on An Agency Story podcast. An Agency Story podcast is hosted by Russel Dubree, successful agency owner with an eight figure exit turned business coach. Enjoy the next agency story.Russel: 0:42

Welcome to another episode of An Agency Story podcast. I’m your host, Russel. Today’s guest on the show is Alex Fender, founder of Funnel Science, a marketing analytics agency based out of Dallas, Texas. Alex is a no-frills, brass tax kind of guy. It makes sense given his success is driven by data and in his world data trumps all. From his first entrepreneurial endeavor selling car parts in the Army to helping companies maximize the value of their sales funnels, Alex is dedicated to his craft. Enjoy the show. Welcome to the show today, everyone. I have Alex Fender with Funnel Science. Thank you for joining us today, Alex.Alex: 1:21

Hey Russel, thanks for having me. I’m looking forward to sharing my story and talking to you more today.Russel: 1:27

Absolutely, my pleasure. Start us off with a quick overview. What does Funnel Science do and who do you do it for?Alex: 1:33

Funnel Science is a software that we’ve developed and it’s also a process and we use the scientific method to improve sales funnels. We set up a sales funnel and then we do AB testing. The science is basically a social science, it’s not a true science, like in the laboratory, we’re dealing with humans. There’s part data science, and then there’s part creative or AB testing, and we’re using humans as our subjects. That’s what we’ve been working on since 2011.Russel: 2:03

Very cool. No petri dishes or bunsen burners. You’re doing it all in the digital realm. Take us back to the beginning of your story. You went into the military, as I understand it, coming outta high school. First off, as a fellow veteran, thank you so much for your service. Tell us what young Alex was thinking he was going to do with his life at that time.Alex: 2:18

I definitely wasn’t thinking about sales funnels. I knew I was gonna join the military when I was real little. I had watched the movie Top Gun when I was about four or five when it came out. I had a dream that one day I would be a naval aviator. When I was 17, I went down to the recruiters and I knocked on all of their doors. I first went to the Navy and then I went to the Air Force and then the Army, and then the Marines. I ended up joining the Marine Corps. It was quite a interesting experience. You go through different phases where in the beginning you think you know exactly what you want to do in your life and then you set out on that path. For me that started back in 1999. I initially joined as a reservist and my plan was to use the military to go to college, I was gonna be in the reserves and go to school, then get my degree and then get a commission as an officer. That was my plan, and then September 11th, 2001 happened, and that event changed my life dramatically, along with most everybody that’s at least 21 years old or 22 years old. If you’re younger than that, you didn’t live through that. I joined the Marines and I served eight years. I ended up not going to college. I went from reservist to activated, and then I spent several years on active duty. After eight years, I had enough of it and I had enough of the government telling me what to do and where I was gonna go. I had ended up losing a lot of my friends and I decided that at eight I had done my time and it was time to move on with the next steps.Russel: 3:44

Certainly a great contribution and again, thank you so much for that. Somewhere in there, sounds like early on in your military career you happened into your first entrepreneurship experience. Tell us about that.Alex: 3:55

My first car was a 69 Mustang. This car was awesome and I love this car, but it was the 69 coupe body style and it wasn’t the Mach 1 or that fast back body style. My dream car was a fast back. I had this car and I brought it on to the base, I was working on the hobby shop with it. After September 11th happened, the base commander came and spoke to all the Marines and basically told us, hey, it’s time to pack up and get everything off of this base and clean out the barracks room, you gotta get all your gear outta here. That included my Mustang, I had to get it outta the hobby shop. That was depressing news in one way because I sunk my blood, sweat and tears and thousands of dollars into this car, and I had to figure out what to do with it. Because it wasn’t my dream car, I wasn’t emotionally attached to it as much, so I could sell it outright or put it in storage. The third option was basically to sell off all the parts that I had bought for it and just part it out. That’s what I chose to do. I started to part it out. Somewhere between dumb luck and fate, that car and me being in the military it all came together. This was back when eBay was starting to ramp up and get started, but before it became super popular. I started selling off the car parts on this Mustang, I was listing ’em on eBay and there was this one part in particular. I bought it for $120 and then I put it up on eBay and I sold it for $500. I was like, man, this is awesome. I said, I wonder if I can do this again. I went and bought this car part and so outta that $500 I took about $240, went and bought two of ’em. I put the other in my pocket and I had some spending money. I got those other two car parts, I put ’em back on eBay and again, I sold both of ’em for $500. Man I might have something here. Over the next nine months of gearing up for a deployment, I made $90,000 in profits selling car parts on freaking eBay. I was selling them all around the world. I was selling car parts to Australia and the Middle East and England. I had sold so many of these that the manufacturer, they’re like, what’s going on here? Why is this guy sending all these parts to this military base? They actually called me up and asked me, what was I doing? I was smart enough not to tell him. I was just like, I’m buying your parts and I’m selling ’em. What else do you need to know? I ended up having ’em on back order for some time. I could have sold way more of ’em if they could have made ’em and shipped ’em to me quick enough. That’s how I got started with my first business. I sold that business to a friend of mine and he took it over. He ended up running it for three or four years after I was done with it.Russel: 6:35

Wow. It sounds a lot better than what Beanie Babies turned out to be. What a cool eBay story. As I understand it and you kinda shared about your military career before, but that at some point in there you encountered some medical setbacks which actually paved the way for your next entrepreneurial endeavor. What was that business? How were you navigating your service and being a business owner at the same?Alex: 6:55

I got hurt. I was on the honor guard. I ended up herniating a disc in my lower back and it was like I was almost paralyzed for a while. I’d be just standing there and fall over. I was basically no good for the Marine Corps anymore. They put me up for a medical retirement board at 21. That was the first one that I did. They basically said, we’re gonna kick you out of the military. You’re no longer on active duty. Go figure it out on your own. I was depressed and heartbroken because I wanted to be a Marine. I had always thought I was gonna be a career Marine and stay in and retire. But at that time I couldn’t serve and I was on limited duty. The medical officers did not think I could stay in or get back to full duty. They put me up for a medical board and I had to figure out what I was gonna do. I was taking a lot of pain medications. The back pain was crazy, excruciating. I couldn’t work for a civilian employer, so I ended up starting another business. We’ve now fast forwarded from right after 2001 to 2003 timeframe, now it’s 2005 and I’m in the process of getting medically retired at 22 now. I started a debt consolidation business. We did debt settlement and debt negotiation, and then we helped people pay off their debt. We had another arm that did mortgages, so once they got outta debt, oftentimes they used us to buy a home and start their life over.Russel: 8:19

Obviously a tumultuous time in your journey but it sounds like you made the best of it. I remember you telling me pretty humorous story on how this venture actually shaped your approach to marketing and maybe even detected a little bit of cynicism when it comes to the marketing world. What happened there was essentially the seed for what was to become Funnel Science eventually.Alex: 8:37

At the second business that I owned we worked with marketing agencies, SEO companies and we even bought leads from lead generators. This was a normal part of our business. We hired and fired 50 different marketing vendors. I kid you not, it was exactly 50 over the four and a half years that I was a part of this business. Many times people have asked me why’d you work with so many? What happened? I said we made decisions by committee and oftentimes I got overruled or even vetoed in my decision that didn’t always go through. We kept making the same mistake over and over again. The common problem is when you sign up, it always sounds good at the beginning. These marketing companies, they always tell you a few things. Just pay this money and we’ll help you grow your sales and you’ll get a good return on investment if you sign up with us. It always sounds good in the beginning, but after a month or two of working with them, you have no results. I needed leads in sales, and if I’m not getting leads in sales, nothing else matters. If it doesn’t make dollars, it doesn’t make sense. That was the problem, we kept doing marketing after marketing with things that didn’t make sense. Now it’s 2008 timeframe. I got activated again with the Marines. I was active duty and I was coming back. I was finally discharged from the Marines in April of ’08. It was around September or October timeframe. I’m coming back to Texas, I’m walking into my business, I’d been gone for a year or so, and my business partner’s writing a check. He’s writing a check to another lead generation company. The check was $10,000. Okay. For $10,000, we got 200 leads. It was $50 a lead. I asked him a simple question. I said, what’s our close ratio on the leads that you’re buying there? Take a guess, Russel, what would you think that the close ratio would be on this lead?Russel: 10:25

I would at least hope you’re getting maybe 10 or 20 percent?Alex: 10:29

If it were that good, it would’ve been great, but in reality, our close ratio turned out to be 0%. Mind you, at this point, I’d come in, he’d already written this check seven different times. We’re 70 grand in the hole on this, and he has no idea how many sales we’re making. Right off of the cuff, he tells me we’re closing 50% of the leads. That’s what he tells me. I knew better. First off, it’s really easy, the numbers don’t lie. If you know your numbers you’re gonna make good decisions, but we had this sales board. I looked up at the sales board and I saw how many sales we had, and we weren’t even close to 50%. I could see by simple math, I was like, how many leads did you buy? And these are our numbers? This sucks. I didn’t really address the problem with them then, but I knew better. I said, okay. I went and worked with one of my software engineers and we wrote some crystal reports. We created this one simple impactful report. Right as he’s writing this check again, he’s doing this again. It’s the eighth time, spanning several months. I knew I had to get this report done. I brought it to him just in time as he is writing his name to another $10,000 check, I slide the report across his desk and I said, look at our close ratio on the leads that you’re spending $10,000 on. He couldn’t believe it or he was shocked. You’d say, how did he not know? When you have a lot of lead sources and you have a lot of leads in your database, it’s sometimes hard to know what’s working and what’s not. He assumed that he is making a good decision, but in reality, he was wasting our money away. That’s what shaped my mindset and shaped my thinking on this, what cut the path. That was the beginning stages of how I got to where I’m at now.Russel: 12:12

I love it. It’s almost like a movie scene. I can picture this scene where you’re trying to get this report together and you’ve gotta rush to get it on the desk before all this money goes out the door. I can totally envision that. When did you actually begin Funnel Science and how did you get your first set of clients?Alex: 12:26

It was at that point of that meeting, he said to me, what are we gonna do about it? I said this, we’re never hiring another F-n marketing vendor again. We’re done. We’re bringing it in-house. If we can’t do this in-house, then we just can’t do it. It was now January of ’09. We brought all of the marketing in-house at this point and at that time, our sales was around $85,000 per month. We had recurring revenue. Nine months later we were able to grow the sales from $85,000 to $350,000 a month. I said to him this, maybe if we apply some science to our sales funnel, we might get a better outcome. It was the summer of ’09 that I had coined the term Funnel Science. We had engaged in this process of being more scientific and measuring what we’re doing. Testing and measuring the outcome and then run a test and then set up another test and then measure the outcome. It was through that process of testing what works and what doesn’t work that we were able to really figure out how to grow our business. We brought all of the marketing in-house. We stopped the outsourcing completely. We stopped working with any SEO companies or marketing companies. It wasn’t until 2011 that I started Funnel Science. I was a partner in that debt consolidation company, I sold my shares, and then I went and worked for an SEO company. I said, man, there’s gotta be something to SEO. Companies ranking at the top of search engines and there’s all these companies selling it, there’s gotta be something to it. It was about April of 2011, and I had a client call me up and she was really upset and distraught. She had worked with us for the last year and she said this to me, Alex, you are so much better than this company you’re gonna work with. I’m canceling my services with you and them. When you start your own company, I will immediately hire you. What she was living through was the same thing I had lived through. I was working at an SEO company, they were taking her monthly payment and after a year of working with us she had little to nothing to show for it. She believed in me, she knew what I could do, but she knew that I was handcuffed by this company I was working for, and so she said, when are you gonna start your own company? That’s how she phrased it to me. I started Funnel Science just shortly after that. June 2nd, 2011 is when we started officially.Russel: 14:56

That was your first client, the woman you mentioned?Alex: 14:58

Yep. Tina Brandon was my first client.Russel: 15:00

I assume one client didn’t pay the bills. How did you get the next set of clients?Alex: 15:04

We started the business in the spare bedroom of my apartment. I did smiling and dialing campaigns. I picked up the phone and called people and I said, your marketing sucks, and your website sucks. I said, it’s obvious that you’re paying for SEO companies, how happy are you with the results? They always said, it sucks and I said there’s a reason for that. Let me show you. I showed ’em the reason and time and time again, I saw the light bulb go off on their head. It was the same thing that I had lived through for years that I’m seeing repeated over and over and over and over again. Here is the flaw and this still happens today. I still see it over a decade later. You cannot manage what you do not measure. If you measure wrong, you’re gonna manage wrong. People are trying to manage more sales. You hire me, I pay you, I do the marketing work, and I’m supposed to get you more sales. Most marketing vendors have no mechanism to measure how many sales are made, and they definitely don’t have to track ’em. How possibly can you know you’re getting more sales? You can’t. It’s either dumb luck or you’re guessing. What needs to be measured for a business to be successful, it’s basically this. How much am I spending? How many leads or how many sales am I making? How much revenue is being generated? If you can do that, you should be able to answer what your return on investment is. Most people don’t even know the ROI formula in the marketing field, which is absolutely baffling to me. If you do not track this, if you do not measure it, how possibly can you manage to grow it? You can’t. That’s what I found over and over again. That’s what’s led to the differentiator between Funnel Science and executing more of a scientific process versus a creative or an artistic process.Russel: 16:51

That’s awesome. In growing the business in the early days, what part of your role as an agency owner came very natural to you? Sounds like being direct is definitely one of them. What was a struggle for you?Alex: 17:02

Being from the Marines and being spit on, dog cussed and thrown in the mud in every other scenario, having your life tossed up and down from time to time, you get used to cutting through the bullshit and being real direct telling people how it is. This was a good thing for me, it also hurt me quite a few times .When you’re talking to a business owner, they normally want to hear the direct, no fluff, here’s how it is. When you’re talking to employees at the business, or you’re talking through people, they’re gonna be much more sensitive than a business owner or definitely a jarhead marine. If you tell ’em their work sucks or if you tell ’em what they’re doing and the results suck, they get really offended by that and they don’t like that. That’s something that I’ve had to deal with constantly, but at the end of the day, you need to know if it’s working or not. It’s the balance of telling people what they need to know, but also helping ’em be successful, but then not hurting their feelings. Marines, we don’t really care about your feelings, you’re either doing a good job or you’re not.Russel: 18:03

I definitely can agree with that. It sounds like you were moving along, things were going really well and then the pandemic came along and it seems to have hit your business hard. A lot of agencies I’ve talked to, everybody took their licks, I guess you could say in the beginning, but particularly in the digital space a lot of ’em saw a lot of success and growth right after the first couple months there. That didn’t sound like that was quite the case in your situation. Why do you think the pandemic hit your business particularly hard?Alex: 18:28

Had we not gotten the P money and the EDIL money, we would’ve been bankrupt. We lost three industries pretty quickly, we lost all of our travel clients. We lost all of our restaurants, and we lost all of our daycare or childcare businesses. The reason why we lost them, it wasn’t any fault of our own. They suffered the lockdowns. They first said it’s gonna be 15 days of lockdowns, and then they stretched it to months of lockdowns. Then they said you can be open at 25% occupancy or things like that. To lose three industries pretty quickly, we ended up losing about 60% of our business and it caused us to have to pivot. We had to refocus and figure out what worked and what didn’t. E-commerce businesses and our e-commerce clients, they were the ones that did the best. They were already set up for this and they were ready to go. It was really sad to go through because a lot of these business owners or employees had become friends of ours. We’re watching them month after month, shutting down their business. Hoping that they would come back online only to have the government screw ’em over again or some politician or judge say, you can’t operate. They all went out of business. When you go bankrupt, you don’t come back from that. You’re done. We survived and managed to make it through. We were growing really good, strong business through February of 2020. When March of 2020 happened, it was downhill for us for at least the next 12 to 15 months. We pivoted. If you’re not growing, you’re dying, as they say. We were definitely dying and we had to find a way that worked. We really concentrated and doubled down on the healthcare space and focused in on finding healthcare clients and growing the business based on that. There were some industries that were just completely dead in the water. You couldn’t get anybody to sign up on, but healthcare and e-commerce is where we were able to survive. We didn’t start recovering and start growing again until this year, 2022. It hasn’t been easy, it hasn’t been phenomenal growth. It’s, okay, we’re no longer losing more than we’re bringing in. Being a national company, we’re in Texas. We had clients all over, we had clients in the northeast, south Florida, all over. We noticed in certain cities, the economy was still healthy, but in other places like New York or California, it was completely dead. So along with the pivot in industries, we had to reshape our geography and our approach and walk away from certain states that we had done traditionally well in. There’s some businesses that have thrived and good for them, but I’d say for 75 to 80 percent of the marketplace, they were impacted in a very negative way.Russel: 21:10

For sure. One of the ways it sounds like you’ve been successful is white labeling and being a strategic partner with other agencies. Why is that a good fit for you and how is it that you help other agencies be successful?Alex: 21:22

What we did with Funnel Science is, we have a software and our software can install in almost every website with just three lines of code. Most marketing vendors don’t have the analytics acumen to do what’s necessary to measure and manage the sales funnel. For us, we can’t work with everybody, but our software can, and what they’re able to do with just three lines of code is they’re able to install a complete communication package that tracks all of their results. Here’s one of the major challenges with any marketing vendor, it’s proving to your clients that what you’re doing works. Sometimes that’s really hard to do or impossible to do for e-commerce, it should be easy. It’s basically click, sale, receipt. You can track click, sale and receipt, you should be able to measure the campaign, the keyword, the email, the ad creative, that’s trackable. That should be easy to track, but these website platforms like Shopify or WooCommerce or WordPress, they make the tracking really hard. As a marketing vendor, you need to know which campaign or which asset or which page are driving the results. That’s what our software can do. Otherwise, if you don’t do that, you’re typically installing six or seven different technologies to do the same thing. Ours is a simple solution and it helps marketing companies measure. It seems to be a good symbiotic relationship where the client wins, the marketing agency win, and then we win and we all grow together. Funnel Science has been definitely a key to our success, but it’s been the success to the clients and to the marketing agencies that we support it. It works to grow all of us together.Russel: 23:02

Can’t argue with that. It doesn’t sound like your entrepreneurial journey is going to end with Funnel Science. What is your goal with this business, and what do you think you’ll focus on next?Alex: 23:12

It’s interesting, I never set out to start Funnel Science, but I knew at my second business, if I didn’t figure this out, there was no point in being an entrepreneur because it was the same struggle over and over at the second company. I wanted to set up a marketing company with my own team that I could manage that would help me with my other ventures. I definitely saw myself starting several companies. The next one that I’ve been working on in the background is a business called Lodge and Outfitter, works in the hunting industry, hunting and fishing charters, and we’re helping fishing guides and lodges book more hunting trips. That’s one I’ve been hunting for most of my life. The other business, it’s a hobby turn business, buying and selling old cars. Going back to my roots where I got started. I always tell people I have OCD, Old Car Disease. I love old Mustangs. That’s where my passion’s at. I’ve been really connected to veterans groups and I’ve always liked to take my veteran friends hunting. It’d be cool to help people that serve their country, many of ’em have dreams of having a hot rod car. It’d be really cool to help ’em connect their dreams, whether either be hunting or with a muscle car, bringing those dreams to reality. That’s where I see myself going. I’ve been contacted many times to sell the company. I haven’t struck a deal yet with Funnel Science. Maybe one day I’ll sell it but at the same time, I built what I set out to build. I built a team, I built a software, and now we can apply this to the other businesses and see what other doors open in the future.Russel: 24:43

That’s awesome. I love hearing stories about the convergence of passions and how you could easily bring all those together. Last question for you, Alex. Are entrepreneurs born or are they made?Alex: 24:54

I’ve been asked this question before and I think my answer has changed over time. I think it’s both. When I was young, I was buying and selling, I was born an entrepreneur, but I also see that entrepreneurs are made. Oftentimes you either think like a business owner or you think like an employee, but there are life events that happen that change us. Sometimes they make us into an entrepreneur or make you into a better entrepreneur. Sometimes people are really good at selling, but they’re not good at running a business. I’ve come to learn that entrepreneurs are made through a series of struggles in their life. If you’re given a silver spoon and everything’s taken care of for you, you have no reason to go through this craziness of entrepreneurship. If you have a steady job with a steady paycheck. You trade that for an unsteady job with an unsteady paycheck, you go from a 40 hour work week to an 80 hour work week, and you don’t even know if you’re gonna get paid. Being an entrepreneur, many times that sucks. I don’t recommend it for everybody, but when you want a better life and you wanna see things and do things that a nine to five job won’t let you have. That’s when you shift and you turn into an entrepreneur and I think anybody can do it. Anybody, if you have the desire to run a business, whether it’s a small business or a big business, it can be done, but they have to mentally make that change. They have to want to have that burning desire to do it. If you don’t have that desire, you’re not gonna cut it because it’s too hard, too cutthroat. Although entrepreneurs, many are born and I really feel like the majority of ’em are made into that. That’s how they get into it. Then, once you become an entrepreneur you’re hooked and you get to that point where you’re unemployable. There’s no way I could work for another dumb boss again. That just isn’t gonna happen after I’ve done it for so long. I can’t go work for the man and then tell me what to do. If you get to that point and you’re unemployable, then you’re cursed because you’re looking for the next business that you’re gonna run. You never go back to working for another nine to five job again.Russel: 26:50

There you go. If people wanna know more about Funnel Science and all things that you’re doing, Alex, where can they go?Alex: 26:58 You can check us out there. My email address is real simple, I have my own personal website, I keep that posted with more of my personal stuff and some of the things I’ve been working on around the country. Those are the best places to reach me at.Russel: 27:17

There we have it. Thank you so much for being on the show today, Alex, it was a pleasure to hear your story and again, I appreciate your time.Alex: 27:23

Awesome. Thanks Russel.27:26

We hope you’ve enjoyed this episode of An Agency Story podcast where we share real stories of marketing agency owners from around the world. Are you interested in being a guest on the show? Send an email to An Agency Story is brought to you by Performance Faction. Performance Faction offers services to help agency owners grow their business to 5 million dollars and more in revenue. To learn more, visit 28:01

One thing I never would’ve thought in the beginning of how often this would happen, but I can’t even count how many times has this happened. The business owner or the VP of marketing, they come to me and they’re like, it’s not working. I’m like, okay, let’s dive into the funnel and let’s look at what’s not working. We get into this and you see this activity, you see the phone ringing, and at the point the phone’s ringing, there’s nothing else that happens downstream of the phone call. We dive into the phone calls and you wouldn’t believe how common this is, but I’ve become a freaking rockstar at helping businesses out by doing one thing to their sales funnel. You wanna know what that is? It’s making them answer their phone. I cannot tell you how many times a business owner has said to me their marketing isn’t working, and then I show them the calls report and I show them the tracking, the actual call recordings, and 20 or 50 or hundreds of calls. You see all of these calls coming in, but there’s this one central problem. The person at the front desk or the salesperson, for whatever reason, chooses not to answer their phone. You’d be like, that’s ridiculous. Why aren’t businesses answering their phone? They just don’t. I’ve come to the conclusion, they just don’t answer the damn phone. Can you think of a time when you called the business and you’re like, I’m ready to buy from them. You hear a ring, and then gets the voicemail and you leave a message and they never call you back and you’re like, man, that was dumb. I was ready to buy from them, but they didn’t call me back or they didn’t answer the phone and I actually built our phone tracking system for that specific reason. We track the calls, we do the recordings, we do transcripts, and I even do sentiment analysis. I tell you how good or bad your phone calls are, but the most basic thing is this. If you don’t answer your fucking phone, don’t expect to grow anymore.Russel: 29:58

Sounds like you can be the author of the greatest one page business book in the history a million times. It just says, answer your damn phone.