Oct. 18, 2021

Episode 23 with Zev Asch Talking About How To Get The Most Out Of Marketing

Episode 23 with Zev Asch Talking About How To Get The Most Out Of Marketing

Episode Twenty Three features Zev Asch talking about his new book,
How To Get The Most Out Of Marketing: An Action Plan For Small Business Owners
My Key Takeaways:
I really enjoyed talking to Zev, not only about his book but the health scare with his hea...

Episode Twenty Three features Zev Asch talking about his new book,

How To Get The Most Out Of Marketing: An Action Plan For Small Business Owners

My Key Takeaways:

I really enjoyed talking to Zev, not only about his book but the health scare with his heart bypass that he and I have in common.  We are both very fortunate that it was caught before something much worse happened.

  • Zev wanted to reiterate that if you suspect something is wrong, heart related, to see a Cardiologist and not to be afraid to get a second opinion.  If you have family history of heart disease, you are a candidate for something cardiac related.
  • Human Beings will often make irrational decisions to get themselves out of pain such as making a major decision based on price alone.
  • As an example of being a Purple Cow, Zev differentiates himself from other consultants by not having a written contract.  Those contracts are typically one sided anyway and are just another reason for someone to say No to working with him.
  • Zev defines Marketing Chutzpah as a company having the gall to ask something of their customer because they realize that it is in the customers best interest to do so.  His example was Jet Blue asking the customers to clean up after themselves so that they could turn the plane around quickly and continue keeping fares low.
  • A Noise Business is one that mirrors its competitors and just adds to the volume of noise out there.  They are the opposite of a Purple Cow.
  • Zev is a proponent of using Direct Mail as it is less likely to be ignored or even blocked like an email might be.
  • Zev says there are three engines of growth: Sales, Marketing, and Customer Service.  When they are all in sync they can fuel growth.
  • Complaints are actually a great source of improving your product or service.  If you address the root cause or failure that lead to the complaint it helps all of your customers.
  • Zev also preaches to companies to pick up the phone and call some of their customers.  Everyone wants to do it impersonally by an email or survey but the companies doing really well are still using a personal touch.  By reaching out to your customers you may address a problem or concern or find an untapped market for them because they didn't know about a product or service that your company delivered.

To learn more about Zev Asch, you can check him out at ZevAsch.com.  I also highly recommend his book, How To Get The Most Out Of Marketing: An Action Plan For Small Business Owners which you can find on Amazon.com

Now next week, we'll have on Brian Fried talking about the world of Inventing and how you can make money by manufacturing and selling or licensing your inventions! Be sure to hit subscribe in your podcast app so that you don't miss it or any other episodes.


Be sure to hit Subscribe in your podcast app so that you don't miss it or any other episodes.


[00:00:00] Greg Mills: Our guest today learned his first business lesson as a young boy, watching the owner of a corner grocery store, his dad, cry when he didn't have a deli item for one of his customers. His dad rode his bicycle across town in blistering heat to buy the specialty item, went to the customers' apartment building, walked up to the fourth floor, delivered the order and refused to accept payment. For a man who worked over 16 hours a day to satisfy his customers, failing even one was emotionally devastating. That image has never left our guest. He eventually immigrated to the U S and graduated with a BS in Psychology from Purchase College and an MBA in Marketing from Pace University. Years later, our guests left the comfort of a high paying corporate marketing position to start his own marketing company, Ledaza Inc. as one of the ways he could honor the legacy of his dad's uncompromising devotion to customers. He believes that she can't consult on how to grow a business, unless you've actually worked for a small business and done it yourself over a long period of time. He's also the graduate marketing professor and director of innovation and entrepreneurship at Touro Colleges.

[00:01:12] Graduate School Of Business. He has written two books, Are You Sure About That? and he has a new book out now called How To Get The Most Out Of Marketing: An Action Plan For Small Business Owners.

[00:01:25] Without further ado, Zev Ash.

[00:01:29] Zev Asch: Hello, Greg. It's a pleasure being here and thanks for having me.

[00:01:34] Greg Mills: Well, thank you for being here, Zev! Now, can you take a few moments and fill in the gaps from that intro and bring us up to speed with where you're at now and what's going on in your world today. 

[00:01:46] Zev Asch: Well, so one correction. I was a graduate marketing professor at Touro colleges, graduate school of business, and a director of innovation entrepreneurship. Last year I resigned from the teaching position and the school, really to dedicate myself to working and finishing the book.

[00:02:05] The book has been a labor of love for me. It's taken me three years to put it together. I thought I was ready to go and the world of self-publishing and I'm sure, some or many of the people in the audience, either wrote a book or contemplating writing a book. And I can tell you that self publishing, , is a universe onto itself.

[00:02:32] I did not learn enough when I published my first book and there were two editions. I over relied on a publisher and all kinds of promises, just handed it off and waited to be famous. And of course that didn't happen. So this time around, I immersed myself in the past six months in theuniverse of self publishing so that I could be an educated author and marketer as well.

[00:02:58] Interestingly, it is taking much longer than I anticipated. , The biggest delay was really deciding on a title for the book and the original title that I came up with was Marketing Mistakes. And it kind of haunted me. I know the universe of small business owners.

[00:03:21] I spent my entire career, 40 years, working in a corporate world and family owned businesses. The last stent, serving clients who are small and family owned businesses. My dad was a family owned business. I understand how business owners and entrepreneurs think. I get their DNA.

[00:03:41] And the thing that bothered me and I literally usedtolay awake at night, was I know business owners do not want anyone to tell them what they're doing wrong. There's enough people doing it. And so I didn't want to title a book that said Marketing Mistakes. I didn't want to poke them in the eye and say,you're making mistakes.

[00:04:00] I wanted to turn it into something that, is an action plan and a guide for them to actually do something positive, that can help them grow their business. It was literally three months of wrestling with different titles, and testing it and doing surveys. I have to say my biggest nemesis was my own son was a brilliant marketing guy, on his own.

[00:04:24] And we sort of battled back and forth. and at some point we both looked at the title. He said, yeah, this is it. And that's the one that I chose for the book. So I've been spending the past, six months or so really immersed in, in the book. That was my mission to actually get it out and publish it.

[00:04:44] And one of the reasons why, even though I scheduled to publish it, last year in 2020, but of course COVID showed up. , I kinda shelved the idea because that wasn't the right time to go tell business owners how to grow their business. This is the right time because as we begin to roll into life as quote unquote normal, my prediction was that every business is going to start coming out of the recession coming out of COVID.

[00:05:16] It's going to be what I call in the book and I call it in blogs and other essays that I write, it's going to be a street fight for survival, for small business owners. Everyone is going to play catch up on the lost revenues and how they've been affected. Granted, I know some business owners and I'm sure you do who have made incredible amount of money during COVID.

[00:05:42] I think those are the exception. Not the rule. And so all of the business owners that are now picking themselves up and beginning to get back to catching up and remarketing themselves, it's going to be a street fight. No one is going to give up anything. And so the book, the timing of the release of the book for me is perfect because, I talk about missed opportunities of what I say, overlook business and marketing principles that every single business owner that I know is doing that. Maybe not all of them, but at least some of them, and the message I have for business owners is stop chasing the next best thing and marketing those shiny objects, those easy buttons you can press and boom, you know, sales take off. It doesn't work, never did.

[00:06:36] And there are ways for you to grow the business and it's right under your feet. that's sort of like where I've been, We've been in the past six months.

[00:06:44] And as you know, and I'm happy to talk about it we were scheduled to do this, about two months ago, maybe, maybe not five weeks ago, something like that.

[00:06:54] And I was a no show Greg, and, which I never do. But, as I told you later, I wasn't in a position to actually tell you I wasn't going to show up because a few days before a scheduled podcast, uh, I wind up going to urgent care with off the charts, blood pressure, which got me to the emergency room, which got me to stay overnight for testing.

[00:07:20] I had no symptoms other than feeling a little strange. To make a long story short on the second day in a hospital, a CT scan and an angiogram revealed that my main left artery was blocked 98. Uh, it's called the widowmakerartery, because when you hear about somebody that was super fit, had no issues, which was my case. Then drops dead.

[00:07:46] That's it? The Widowmaker artery.. So I got in, I checked in, on my birthday, August 20th and August 23rd. I underwent the bypass surgery and unfortunately had to miss the podcast. 

[00:08:02] Greg Mills: Yeah, we'll forgive you for that. You get a pass. 

[00:08:05] Zev Asch: You know, I have a heart condition now, so it'd be easy on me. 

[00:08:09] That's my new excuse for everything.

[00:08:12] I wrote an article in LinkedIn about my experience, but it wasn't really was not about me. It was about a question that I was asked over 20 years ago when I was , in Holland visiting one of our company, clients negotiating, a very, very large manufacturing contract.

[00:08:32] And at the end of the conversation where everything was in place and we were about to sign, he looked at me and he said, one last question. What is your disaster recovery plan? And I looked at him really dumbfounded, but I'm a very straightforward on his. I said, Mervyn, I apologize. I have no idea what you're asking me.

[00:08:57] Unbeknownst to me, interestingly Mervin. And I found that later was a world renowned international quality and process expert. And he was an amazingly humble guy and he said to me, look, we're going to give you a contract to manufacturer a critical component in our medical device. A new medical device that we're about to launch all over Africa.

[00:09:23] You have a factory and what happens if there's a disaster and the factory blows up. Do you have a plan in writing that addresses that form of a disaster that allows you to quickly go into emergency plan? And how quickly can you get back into production mode? Because, If you can't make the part, we can't sell our device, and the entire company is affected.

[00:09:50] And the reason I brought that up was because this is also became the question I ask every single one of my company's client, when we're on onboarding them, I look at the business owner and I say, what is your disaster recovery plan? And their, their expression is exactly like mine was, what are you talking about?

[00:10:10] So we said, look, let's define what constituted disaster for you as a business owner. So obviously number one is the business owner, actually getting a heart attack and not being able to come to work. Right? You're the leader. You own the business. Okay. But there are other forms of disaster. They don't have to be so morbid.

[00:10:29] It could be your number one biggest client leaving you, your number one sales guy, leaving you, the place goes on fire, et cetera. Right? And the key to the question is to actually, define the answers, prioritize them, and have a plan, actually a written plan that says, okay, if it happens, we go to the book and we execute .The same reason why pilots have to go and spend hours and hours in simulators.

[00:10:59] In the event, there is a disaster during flight. They're not going to sit there and look at the manual and say, okay, let's go to page 355 and see what it says. They go into muscle memory reaction. So, um, I wrote the article and kind of combined it into the what's your disaster recovery plan, but also spoke about my, my own experience.

[00:11:20] I have to say as I'm sure you agree with me, for somebody who is very big on fitness, eating right, no issues, perfect cholesterol. This really brings our own mortality into question and. When you lay down alone in the hospital, when everybody left you and I didn't sleep for five days, cause I'm a light sleeper and all these damn alarms go off everywhere.

[00:11:47] And all you do is you sit there in bed, then you know, I'm going into a major surgery. Am I going to survive it? What's going to happen or after it, I mean, you start thinking, not happy thoughts. You're all alone and it does give you a completely different perspective about first of all, appreciation of what we have.

[00:12:06] We always say, we should appreciate it. We say it, but then one of these events happens and you say, you know what? That was a really fine line with me being here and not being here. The one thing I kept thinking about is on the weekends. I ride my bike outside on about 13 to 15 miles, a very hilly terrains.

[00:12:30] And I said, you know, this is not a way to go, you know, it's like going downhill 30 miles an hour and just poof, there you go. So anyway, enough about me. Well that part

[00:12:42] Greg Mills: Yeah, 30 years ago, I think that your odds and I don't know what the doctor told you. I asked and he said that mine were, I think like the two or 3% of really bad things happening, dying. But, I think 30 or 40 years ago, we would've been talking to much higher, like in the 40 to 50% range, if not more. So it's just an incredible time that we live in, 

[00:13:08] Zev Asch: the reason I bring this up is because anyone else who's hearing us, who thinks there are indestructible perfect health.

[00:13:16] If you have family history of heart disease, you are a candidate for something for hundred percent. Even if you feel great, you should go get some tests done that are very, very simple, uh, to at least tell you where you're at, even though you might not be aware of anything. So that's sort of like my message.

[00:13:36] Greg Mills: a good message to have. And I, I hate to admit this, I thought, I, I thought it was one of those things that wouldn't happen to me. 

[00:13:45] Zev Asch: I'm a psychology buff. I'm obsessed with human brain, which is why I pursued psychology and then went to marketing. But there is a concept of what we call the lizard brain, which is the, ancient brain that's in the back of our head still very much alive. That's the ancient brain when we were monkeys and apes, and it only knows how to do one or two things is seek pleasure and avoid pain.

[00:14:09] And when, when we start to think about, I don't know, I don't think I'm feeling good. You know, there's a little pressure in my chest. Our brain will instantly reroute the thinking into, oh, it's nothing. It's probably something I ate. It's, uh, indigestion, which is by the way, one of the misdiagnosed symptoms very often, uh, This is what, what our lizard brain does all the time.

[00:14:37] And we kind of have to fight it and I'll stop talking about the heart attack. Cause we sound like two nursing home patients. Their message is listen to your body. Okay. Don't be a hero, especially if you have family history. If your cholesterol numbers are high hovering on high, if you are on medication, you don't feel good.

[00:14:56] Go get it checked out and don't go to a regular doctor. That's my other message. Go see a cardiologist, regular doctors have clueless about what we're talking about. Don't mean to insult them. I'm just saying you don't feel right to your family history. Go to cardiologist.

[00:15:12] Greg Mills: I normally ask, do you come from an entrepreneurial background, but we know you did, and I know that your dad was one of your heroes, but I'd actually like to ask you about another hero in your life.

[00:15:26] Would you mind telling us about your mother and the impact that she had upon your life? 

[00:15:32] Zev Asch: of course. And again, um, as children, we know from psychology that we imprint on our parents and our upbringing plays a critical role in, in how we wind up as adults. Uh, and so my story and I'll be brief, but there's a blog on my website that I release every Mother's Day that tells the story. But my biological mom died when I was two weeks.

[00:16:01] She died from back then some sort of a infection and she was gone. At the same time, there was a woman that, uh, came from Sweden to visit her two sisters in Israel, which is where I'm from. And in one of the social gatherings, everybody in town was talking about this guy, this man who lost his wife and has a two week old baby with no mother.

[00:16:29] This woman said to everyone, I have to go see this baby, uh, for no other reason other than that's what you wanted to do. So somebody knew my father. She came to see my father and she said to him, can I see the baby? Now? We all know that if a stranger walked into somebody's home and what are the, see a baby today, you call 9 1 1, or you just chase them out.

[00:16:55] But I don't know what you did then my father said, okay. And she said, I took one, look at you. I looked at your father. And I said, uh, if you give me a place to stay, I would like to help you raise him. Just like that. And, and again, she, she was on a visit from Sweden, with a suitcase planning to go back to where she lived, and completely gave everything up.

[00:17:22] And my father said, yes, obviously, uh, she stayed and helped them raise me. Uh, when I was a year old, she officially adopted me. They got married and she adopted me. I had no idea that she wasn't my mother. Was only when I turned, I think 13 shy of 13. My father sat me down one day and said, I want you to know something. Because this is the only time I ever had a fight with my mother that day.

[00:17:58] And I think I blurted out a curse word, which wasn't very nice at her. And she was very offended and cried and went to my father. So he came, sat me down and he said, I need to tell you something. And then he told me for the first time that she wasn't my biological mother, but she was the person that raised me.

[00:18:17] She was an incredible noble person. Her own history- , she couldn't even talk about it because she escaped the gas drain during the Nazi era. She was on the bottom of the train, able to breathe fresh air through a crack. Everybody else died on top of her. When they got through the massive grave, they dumped everybody into a pit and they left.

[00:18:41] She spent the rest of the time living in the forest and sewers. , she obviously emotionally was incredibly affected and wasn't even able to bring herself to tell me everything she went through. But the interesting part was this was Germany and everybody in Israel who escaped Germany and lived there absolutely hated Germans for maybe justifiably.

[00:19:05] so. My mother was completely different. She said to me, you should always say hello to your worst enemy. You should always respect them. I never had a bad word about the Germans, anything. She was really incredibly noble and every Jewish holiday, she insisted of bringing a stranger to our house to enjoy the meal of the holiday.

[00:19:27] So this is the person that, that kind of raised me because my dad worked in the grocery store. Four 30 in the morning till eight o'clock at night. That's my mother's story.

[00:19:38] Greg Mills: Okay. All right. Anything I ask after that it's going to pale in comparison and seem trite. So let's start with something trite and mindless. Your book has a number of football, analogies, and terminology in it. What's your favorite team? 

[00:19:53] Zev Asch: So I have to say, um, in terms of sports, the only game that I like is football, American football. I, I love soccer because I've played it and I grew up on it and it's, it's kind of big on long island. I coach my, both of my kids for 12 years. We've done some amazing things, but in terms of sports, I love football, but I'm not a fan of any team.

[00:20:19] I mean, there was a years back. I was a San Francisco fan. Um, I'm kind of a fan, whoever my daughter is. 

[00:20:27] Greg Mills: Okay. 

[00:20:27] Zev Asch: and, and she went through med school in Buffalo. So she's a Buffalo bills fan. It's a really sweet team, but, I'll just go along with her. I enjoy the game, but I'm not one of these fanatics.

[00:20:38] Greg Mills: That's fair. Now, in your book, you state that marketing has been getting really increasingly complex because of human decision-making behavior, which is often not as predictable as we'd like it to be. Anxious customers make irrational decisions to just get it over with like opting for the lowest price instead of value.

[00:21:00] Can you give us some more examples of this in real life? 

[00:21:05] Zev Asch: There are people out there and sometimes you, I might not be able to help myself and go into a rant about the pseudo, fake self promoted marketing gurus. But there are enough people out there who claim that they figured out marketing. And for me, marketing is 100% human behavior, right? We all need customers.

[00:21:29] Customers are human. Humans make decisions, and contrary to the common perception that maybe we figured it out. We really haven't. And, uh, there's some things that we can potentially predict, but most of it, and I go into this in the book, um, you know, the fake experts in the gurus. They never ever ran a company in their life, but they figured out how to use email and subject lines and maybe Facebook.

[00:22:00] So they come up with template things that they say that work, uh, that the good news is they don't work. The bad news is people buy their stuff and they only realized much later. The thing I say in the book about marketing is marketing, it's actually really straightforward and a common sense discipline, but because of the complexities of the world, we live in, meaning everyone who wants to be a business owner can. All you need is a laptop with Wifi and you can create a website and you can make up testimonials if you want, and you're in business.

[00:22:36] And so the universe is filled with competitors. Some that we know, and some that we don't know. The end result is that everyone that has a business that engages is marketing, spews out stuff out there. And I call that digital noise that what's incoming to us as consumers and to our own customers is nonstop barrage, avalanche of crap. Buy for me, buy for me, buy for me. And the result of the overwhelming avalanche is: Human behavior, when we are confronted with too many choices, the lizard brain gets into action because too many choices means discomfort, anxiety. And so when we feel ,that we do want to do things right, seek, seek pleasure, avoid pain.

[00:23:28] So being overwhelmed and being anxious is painful. We want to get out of it. So if we have to make a buying decision, one of the irrational behaviors that many consumers make, when they're under pressure, they'll just pick the lowest price. And the reason they pick the lowest price is not because it's necessarily the better product, it's because the decision comes to an end.

[00:23:53] The overwhelming stage now ended. It's a form of pleasure, right? I'm not anxious anymore. I have to make that. Right. That's one of the typical ones that we fight as marketers and as business owners all the time. No matter what business you're in, including mine is as growth and marketing consulting for businesses, uh, including any of my clients, When the first question somebody asks is how much do you charge?

[00:24:23] It gets you to shutter because it should not be the first question. And I'm not saying the price is not important. It's incredibly important, but it should never be the first question. And usually it's sort of a telltale sign when you deal with somebody who meets you for the first time. And the first question out of their mouth is "What do you charge?"

[00:24:48] I typically answer it with "Why does it matter?" Because it seems like a stupid answer, right? Of course. 

[00:24:56] But why do you focus on price? And we try to understand, to kind of peel off the onion and get to, so why are you asking? And I have to tell you in my business more often than not people ask that question, because they've been burnt by so many fake agencies and coaches and people that claim to be marketing experts.

[00:25:20] They've been burned to the tune of a lot of money, but they realize that they still need help when it comes to marketing. And so the question is how much you charged? If I told them that I charge $5,000 a month, they might run away because they don't trust me. They don't know me. Rightfully so, but the, the memories of, of the previous burnout and the money that they sacrificed is driving that decision.

[00:25:47] My role, My goal is to get them to relax and say, listen, I don't want you to hire me. Let's talk about your business. Let's talk about what went right. What went wrong? Let's see if we can identify, what were the issues. And then we could talk about it later on. What I try to do when I do this is to really get them out of anxiety mode, into listen at the end of the conversation.

[00:26:13] And those usually I take at least an hour. At the end of the conversation, it's totally up to you. If you feel comfortable, we can continue. If you don't, you'll learn one, a few things for me during the conversation, and I wish you the best and that's okay. So this is the big one, Greg it's, it's the most irrational decision that, that comes out of that state of anxiety and, and the barrage of options and the burnout.

[00:26:43] Greg Mills: I can understand that about the lizard brain. Even with shopping, just going in and looking for a pair of khaki pants, there's numerous, there's too many options. So I just kind of go with your gut feeling and get in and get out. And that's probably why I'm not going to make the best dressed list anytime soon. 

[00:27:05] But I guess a better question would be what kind of value could you be delivering to me Zev after consulting 

[00:27:13] cause it sounds like you could deliver like, you know, five X or 10 X. So,

[00:27:18] if you charge 5,000 and I'm getting 25,000 above receipts, that would be a heck of a deal. 

[00:27:27] Zev Asch: So it's interesting. And even though I'm a polished experience, marketing guy, I've made mistakes and bought some stuff from those other guys a few times only to find out that they didn't know what they were doing, but this is, this is the premise of all these pseudo experts that we see on YouTube. Uh, we see the webinars you get there.

[00:27:53] The emails are like three miles long. They're brilliantly crafted. They're very smart copywriting. The videos are, you know, they stand in front of a fancy car that's really not theirs. And then they go and do an open house in front of a mansion and they filmed some, a few minutes. Their logic is exactly what you just outlined.

[00:28:11] Right. These are real proposals, right? At the end of the webinar. Let's say I'm a high-end marketing consultant. And I want to charge $10,000 a month, which I don't. They prey on people like me.

[00:28:26] And he said, listen, I've got a system that will automatically attract high-end clients to you. Here's a check, a monthly check to show you how much money I make. So to buy my system is $15,000, right? That's a lot of money. But think about this, Greg, how many clients at $10,000 do you need for return on investment for this 15,000, your first client almost pays back the 15 grand, your second client, you're already making money.

[00:29:01] So that's the logic. So I have to tell you that , I never promise. And I never use the same terminology that those other guys use. I can assure you that you're going to get a three X, a five X or 10 X. I promise nothing. What I promise is that you're going to get 40 years of hands-on small business experience, and we're going to work together.

[00:29:28] To me, it's a collaboration. It's not me being the magician. We're going to collaborate. And I promise you that when we're done, your business will be much better than it was when we started. And you'll be able to grow your business, how much you're going to grow. I don't know. And my retainer fees are not crazy.

[00:29:52] They're purposely reasonable to give the business owner the comfort level that they can actually invest a relatively small amount of money. I am a disciple of my mentor is Seth Godin. I have come across him over 20 years ago. I've watched every word he said on YouTube.

[00:30:19] I have every single book of his, some of them are autographed and endorsed by him. One of the early books that he wrote was Purple Cow. And I am a huge believer in Purple Cow. And I watched my dad do it without knowing anything about marketing. So you have to differentiate. One of the ways that I differentiate:

[00:30:39] I don't have a written contract and there are probably thousands of coaches and marketing experts at a screaming and yelling. What an idiot! Why don't you have a contract? And I'm going to tell you why I don't have a contract. It's a very simple, a contract is another reason for my clients to say No., let me show it to my lawyer.

[00:31:00] Every contract that I've ever seen. And I've used a few early on and I stopped was design is not in favor of your client. It's designed to protect the coach, the consultant from early termination and it penalizes the customer if they do that. So if I have an, a contract at two months, termination, notice if you own a stop, you got to let me know in two months, pay me the two months or we continue going, right.

[00:31:30] If you want your money back, which nobody offers, you have to prove that you've done all the homework that I told you to do, right? So the contract, that's just another way for a business owner to pull up a wall and say, No. So my contract jokingly is Greg, you and I are going to work together.

[00:31:49] You, you made the decision. And so I'm going to send you an email tonight and it's going to say the following: Dear Greg, as we agreed today, we're going to start working together on such and such date. Your monthly retainer will be such and such. If at any point you decide that you would like to stop our collaboration.

[00:32:08] Please let me know by email, I will then immediately stop the work. If it's in the middle of the month, I will refund you the balance of your monthly fee, which is paid on the first of the month. And that's it. No questions asked if I've misrepresented myself and you don't see the value, get out, I'm giving you an easy out.

[00:32:31] Greg Mills: Yeah. Yeah. that's very fair. And I could see to your point, anybody, that's looking over their lizard brain going with all of the boiler plate that's like they've read that's geared, towards the coach and not towards them. That would just be a red flag.

[00:32:49] Zev Asch: Usually by the way, most of the coaches, consultants, et cetera , usually the contract has a minimum period, right? So you agree to work with me for the next six months. And if you terminated early, you owe me the money till the rest of the six months. Right. , that's absolutely insane. 

[00:33:09] Clients that hire me and I represent them with ad agencies, with SEO companies. If we go that route, none of them is allowed to sign an annual contract with anyone. I will never do that again. Ever. No, every contract we sign is a month to month with a termination clause. If I want to stop, I'm going to stop.

[00:33:31] It absolutely makes no sense. But particularly in today's environment to force someone to commit to a long-term contract. I don't do it. I have to tell you that, pretty much without exception, my closing rate with clients is close to 95%. Not everybody says yes, but one of the reasons is that they have no reason to fear anything, right?

[00:33:51] If you don't have a few thousand dollars to risk about working with somebody, then you probably not have business anyway, if you can't afford that. So, yeah, it's a risk either way, but it's, it's a risk that's going to last a month. Not nothing more than that or sooner, if you want to.

[00:34:08] Greg Mills: How do you really define what business are you in and what is marketing chutzpah? And I'm hoping I pronounce that right. 

[00:34:15] Zev Asch: Yeah, no, you did. You're you almost a convert to Judaism. I'm proud of you! One of the early questions that we tackle with with clients and I encourage every business to go through. It is the question is what business are you really in? And it's not something that I can give you a template at the answer, because it really depends on the business.

[00:34:37] And we, and we dig through every aspect of the business, particularly customers, the different customer segments, the competition, every single competitor. You have to understand the universe that you are catering to in order to define. What business or area. So in the book, I give a couple examples. The best example that I use in public speaking and in workshops is Jet Blue Airlines, which most people are familiar with.

[00:35:08] So if you go back to with Jet Blue came on the scene, they literally took the air travel world. It by storm, everybody was talking about Jet Blue. You get on a plane, you fly, there's a TV and a seat in front of you. You can watch TV while you fly. People are nice to you. If you want an extra bag of pretzels, the flight attendant will smile and give you another bag.

[00:35:33] And not give you an attitude, like some of the major airlines, , all along from point a to point B nothing but great experience. So what did the Jet Blue founder answer the question, what business are we in? Right. So when you ask somebody what businesses is American Airlines in some of the answers you're going to get are there in the airline business, they're in the flying business, they're in the transportation business, or an answer that people give me very often, which is wrong.

[00:36:04] They're in a customer service business, customer service is not a business. It's something that we do. So those are the typical answers, right? Airline, transportation, flying. And the answer is absolutely not. And they nailed it. They understood something that all the major airlines missed all along, despite their size, their resources, et cetera, and their brand.

[00:36:31] And one of the things that the Jet Blue founders sat around and talked about was. What is it about flying that needs disruption? What is it about flying that makes it an unpleasant experience? And for most of us almost everything, right? People hate the fly. Cause they're scared floating up at 37,000 feet.

[00:36:59] Hoping it doesn't fall. Getting through the airport, checking in your luggage. It's too big. It's too heavy. Standing in line, going through security, waiting for the plane. Then there's a delay. And then you sit in a plane many, two or 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 hours, it's boring.

[00:37:17] Yes, they have TVs up in the middle and you have the earphones. Sometimes they don't work. And then you have the seat in front of you just as they serve the meals. That guy decides to recline the seat just right into your tray of food. It's just miserable.

[00:37:32] And so they said, what can we do to disrupt that? And they came up with a solution: brand new planes, TVs in the seat pocket, a training in a culture that serves customers. But in a way that's willingness to serve, not just because I have to. Not because it's a job. They trained everybody from the flight attendants to the ticket agents, to the pilots who greet you.

[00:37:57] When you come on the plane, everybody's super friendly, then you watch TV. Then you could get some food. Let me explain what chutzpah is. It's sort of like having the guts to do something unheard of. So if I went to a bald guy and said, excuse me, can I borrow your hairbrush?

[00:38:18] That's sort of like chutzpah, right? Cause he's a bald guy. He's not going to carry hairbrush. 

[00:38:23] So with Jet Blue, the marketing chutzpah was at the end of the flight. Can you imagine the chutzpah of the airline? They ask our passenger to clean up the plane so that they could do a quick changeover and take off for the next flight.

[00:38:43] So I'm a full, fair paying customer. I'm paying to fly your plane. And then you're asking me to clean up, right? That's what.

[00:38:54] Greg Mills: And People are doing it willingly.

[00:38:56] Zev Asch: People love it because they understand that for Jet Blue to keep their pricing so competitive as they were, and to continue to grow and to continue to be available for us with a good experience then yeah, nobody ever says, how dare you ask me to do that? You clean up, they do it. They do it willingly. So the Answer in a Jet Blue case, the answer to what business are we in?

[00:39:26] We're in the travel experience business. Okay. Now transportation not flying, not airplanes, but travel experience. And that's what they identified as the disruptor. That's going to change the industry. And they did more. A lot of companies copy them today, but this was the Jet Blue marketing chutzpah.

[00:39:48] Greg Mills: Now you talked about Purple Cow earlier, but in your book you mentioned a Noise Business versus a Purple Cow. What is the Noise Business? Can you go back over the Purple Cow and how do you position yourself as a Purple Cow and how do you earn the right to get noticed? 

[00:40:05] Zev Asch: So the way that I explained purple cow, the way I used to explain it to my, to my graduate students. , imagine that you're a customer and in front of you is a very thick cloud of fog.

[00:40:21] And there are a whole bunch of people in the fog, but you can't see them. And everyone is screaming by for me by. That's sort of like marketing the 21st century, right? Everybody's screaming, everybody's promoting, everybody's emailing, everybody's posting on Facebook. Everybody's doing the same exact thing.

[00:40:43] So the end result is that digital noise that come at us as consumers. And then you said that then who do I pick? They all sound the same. Oh, by the way, since website is one of my areas of expertise, they don't just sound the same. They all look the same. You've got to every website, it's all the same crap.

[00:41:03] It's all about them. By for me, I'm the leading company in my industry. We have 150,000 years of experience. We are experts, you know, at the end of the day, who cares? It's your words. And you talking about yourself, what you're missing is do you know me? Do you know the customer? Do you understand. What I'm about, do you understand my needs or the reason I show it that showed up at your website and because I have a problem, I need to site.

[00:41:31] So Purple Cow. The way Seth Godin talks about it is if you drive down a country road and there are cows on either side of the road and they're all brown, you're going to keep on driving. But if all of a sudden you'll see a purple cow, you'll stop the car. And today we're going to go out, you're going to take your cell phone.

[00:41:51] You're going to do a selfie with the Poper Cow. You're going to post it everywhere you are. You're going to say, wow, look at this a Purple Cow. So what I tell my clients, what I try to do for myself is that every business should strive to be the Purple Cow in the industry. You have to be different in, in the cow example.

[00:42:10] It's different by the way you look, but it's not just about the way you look, you have to be different and better. And that's a very, very challenging, difficult process. In digging to the core of your customers and truly understanding what is it that they need that other people don't give them?

[00:42:32] Greg Mills: Now, thinking back to the experience that your dad had with the lady that wanted the specialty, deli item. Had there been cell phones back then, he might've gone viral for that. And as it was, she probably told several of her friends. 

[00:42:52] Zev Asch: I'm sure that she was so shocked by my father's, not just delivering her, the meat he didn't have, but also refusing to take payment. And she probably told everybody in the apartment builder, but you're right. If this was today, she would be posting stuff all over the place and sharing it with people a hundred percent.

[00:43:11] Giving stuff for free is not differentiating. Okay. I think give you stuff for free is bad business. That's my own opinion. But at point where you might have a conflict with a customer, the win-win is to satisfy the customer. That's the only win-win. So they come back and buy from you. If you want to be right and prove the customer wrong.

[00:43:37] Okay. So it's a win-lose you won, you lose the customer, just walks away. uh, my opinion is that today we just can't afford to lose any customers. 

[00:43:48] Greg Mills: Now you've made the claim in your book. That marketing is not an expense item. Can you expound on that for some of our listeners that may think otherwise? 

[00:43:58] Zev Asch: I think even to this day, many people approach marketing is a necessary evil, right? Do you have to spend money because it's marketing, everybody does marketing. So you have to spend money. Uh, if you approach marketing is something that, uh, uh, it is an entity in your business that takes your money away and spends it.

[00:44:20] If it's your marketing manager or whoever it might be, uh, you probably should stop doing marketing altogether. Just rely on word of mouth and referrals and stopped doing it because, and I can tell you with, with a hundred percent degree of certainty, because I've met quite a few and work with quite a few small business owners, anyone that approaches marketing as an expense item is never going to be happy.

[00:44:48] They're never going to be satisfied. The message that I have for everyone. And I think it's, it's in the book as well. Free marketing doesn't work, right? It's a pay to play discipline today. And again, so you said, okay, so why are you saying that? What I'm saying is because everybody is doing the free marketing posting on Facebook is free, right?

[00:45:11] Sending emails every day is free, right? Doing tweets is free. There's stuff that we can do that doesn't cost us money necessarily, but everybody's doing it. So now you've got that cloud with everybody inside screaming, buy for me, buy for me. If you want to be seen, you have to pay. And you have to do Google ads and you have to do Facebook ads and you have to do Instagram ads and you have to do what I do with my clients.

[00:45:39] I pushed them screaming and yelling. We're doing direct mail again, and they don't want to put the stamp on it. Why put a stamp on it? If I could send an email, no email goes to junk. A nice, beautiful, direct mail piece is going to be seen by your customer. And guess what? There's a lot less competition in people's inbox today.

[00:46:00] Like mailbox than the email system. Does email work. Yes, it still works, but direct mail is a home run. You just have to get over that, that, that mentality of why spend 58 cents on a postcard. If I could just press send on an email. Okay. It's not complicated. Your email is going to wind up in a promotion tab or junk.

[00:46:26] The 58 cents is going to be seen by our customer. Now, will they throw it in a garbage of course, some of them will maybe babe, but the ones that don't, are you new customer or repeat customers?

[00:46:42] Greg Mills: You also talk about people were really leaving money on the table when it comes to their website. And you talk about the three E's, which I believe are marketing sales and customer service. The three engines of growth. 

[00:46:55] Zev Asch: Before I get to the website, this is the theme of my book and it's the theme of the work that I do. And, and that's how I was able to be very successful in growing multi-million dollar businesses in my own career, in a corporate career. And I do this again with our clients. 

[00:47:10] This is the only way you grow a business by a combination of three elements, I call them the engines of growth, three elements that work in sync, Marketing, Sales, and Customer Service. So the role of Marketing is to generate leads. The role of Sales is to convert leads to customers, and the role of Customer Service is to take those paying customers and hold onto them for dear life.

[00:47:38] Don't let them leave. When I say in sync, I mean that the salespeople work with the marketing people, the customer service people work with the salespeople. It's not a adversary relationship. That's the root of all evil in many corporations, everybody points fingers at each other, especially when things don't go well.

[00:47:56] When you have those three elements or three groups of people working hand in hand, You have an incredibly powerful business and many companies just drop the ball. They focus on the Marketing piece, which is leads, leads, leads. Why do you want leads? Because I need new customers. Okay. So leads and sales.

[00:48:15] You can't neglect the Customer Service piece, but they all have to stay together. In terms of the websites. When I say they leave money on the table, the website is I call it the DNA of your business, right? People, no matter what you do in Marketing, no matter what you do, as you as a brand, all roads lead back to your website.

[00:48:39] And this is the one place where you have three to 10 seconds to engage with a visitor and convince them that you are the Purple Cow, that you have the solution that they're looking for because you understand them. And most websites missed the point because they think it's about them and everything is about, we, we, we, we, we, we are the leaders.

[00:49:06] We are the experts. We, we, we, and they look at my product and look at the new version of my software. It's all self-glorification and nobody cares. Right. I'll take me as an example. I don't particularly believe most of the words I see on websites. I'm looking for other verification that this is a real business, not testimonials because I don't believe those either.

[00:49:29] I'm looking for ways in the content of the website that shows me that I'm dealing with professionals, and then I'm dealing with people that truly understand my needs as a customer. That's the proof. So when you miss that three to 10 seconds, opportunity to engage with a customer potential customer.

[00:49:49] Once they leave. They're never coming back. They're gone. Now, when you think about the money you spent driving leads to your website, and then they come to a shitty website that self glorifying your company, or it's a digital brochure as opposed to a place that people could interact, then yeah. You're not just leaving money on the table.

[00:50:12] You're completely giving up an opportunity to grow your business and get a return on your investment for the money you spent to get them to the website.

[00:50:20] Greg Mills: I liked your simple math approach to customer complaints and in retention, do you mind explaining that for our list? 

[00:50:29] Zev Asch: So let's talk about complaints. One of my old bosses, whenever we used to bring up in team meetings that somebody complained, he used to look at us and say, did anybody else complain about the same thing? Right. And if we said no, and then said, then they're idiots.

[00:50:50] Ignore them. That's awful. Right? You shouldn't really be in business if that's the way you approach it. Right? My own customers, because they listened to me. Some of them might give me the same answer and I say, listen, I've been around the block a few times and I can tell you with 100% confidence that for every complaining customer there, X number of customers, they just never going to do business with you.

[00:51:14] They didn't bother complaining. I don't know what the number is. But even if it's four to five X for every complaint, it's insane. Why would you want to lose customers? Because you're providing bad service or you don't give them an opportunity to tell you that something is not right and for you to actually make it right.

[00:51:37] So when, when we look at complaints, first of all, we don't dismiss them. We have to look at everyone, but you have to make a decision. Is this a legitimate complaint or not? Right? Sometimes they're just not legitimate. Somebody wants something that your company doesn't provide, or if it's a product, it just, that's not one of the features.

[00:52:00] Okay. We're not for you. I'm sorry. Okay. But for the most part, complaints are actually a great source of improving your own service and improving your own products. Somebody says, why don't you do this? You know what never thought about it? Because no product is ever perfect. It's just doesn't happen. So look at complaints, identify with every complaint.

[00:52:25] One, is it legitimate? And if it is, then I'm going to use a Quality Control Term that we call the Root Cause Analysis. We want to get down to the bottom of, or the root cause of their complaint, right? The complaint is legitimate. Now we're going to try and analyze why did we screw up? And it's a process and it's not always evident from the first couple of questions.

[00:52:55] So, uh, I, I believe that Toyota system at what they call the five whys, right? So if something didn't work, you ask why didn't it work? And then you get an answer and then you say, okay, why is this answer? If you ask it five times, by the time you get to the fourth or fifth Why, you identified the root cause of the problem.

[00:53:16] So it's a process and the complaints is a gold mine of opportunity to not just hold on to your customers, but actually improve your service, by paying attention to it. Being defensive about complaints is pointless. There's no reason for it. Look at it as an opportunity to hold on to a customer and improve your company.

[00:53:35] I'm a data guy, but I'm also a data guy that doesn't like to get lost in numbers, but there's some numbers and I go them in the book that are important for every business owner to actually go through. The Key Performance Indicators.

[00:53:48] Every company should absolutely track, not just the number of complaints, but the nature of the complaints and at the edge of each month, if you do an analysis, okay, how many complaints did we get? How many were legitimate? What did we learn from the ones that we identified the root cause in terms of the number of complaints, relative to how many transactions we did this month is the number significant.

[00:54:12] It's unlikely that the number's going to be really significant, but you want to look at the trend, you track it from month to month. If the number of complaints is trending up, something's not right. You can't blame customers for it, something isn't right. And you want to pay close attention to it.

[00:54:30] The customer retention is one of the holy grills for me, right? When I sit down with customer service team and I used to do this with my own teams, I said to them, let me tell you what your job is. Your job is to provide. The absolute highest level of service to our customers and to make sure that none of our customers ever even think about leaving us, do not give them a reason to think about leaving us.

[00:54:58] That's the impetus behind any customer service, group. And today it's even more critical because we're much less personal than we used to be. Right. You can't call the customer service department. You're on chat. You have to go, you have to send them an email know it's excruciatingly painful for me because I think that's awful.

[00:55:19] We've, impersonalized the way we do business. And it's horrible. The companies, interestingly, that are doing phenomenally well are the ones that actually stay personal. I call it the humanize, the experience, right? We're all humans. So stay as. Um, one of my clients, we just edit the chat function to the, to the website, but it's not a robotic Chet.

[00:55:40] It's not a bot. It's a chat where a visitor to the website clicks on the chat. He's actually talking to a live customer service person and that's critical, right? We can't get more impersonal and cold than we already are. That's just the lost art of connecting with human beings. So customer retention, you get to look every month.

[00:56:04] How many customers we acquired, but how many customers did we lose? What is the repeat sales percentage? And those are critical numbers because if you starting to see a Trisha and who sent to lose customers, especially if you were in a consumer business where people by consistent. Those are really big alarm bells.

[00:56:24] They need to be looked at right away. So retention again, like I said before, I consider losing an existing customer, nothing short of committing business suicide, you work so hard, it costs so much money in terms of lead acquisition and the marketing piece to acquire a customer. Why would you let them go?

[00:56:46] Why would you do anything that let them,

[00:56:48] Greg Mills: in your book, you, you give the example of a company that has over 600 customers, but never reaches out to them to thank them or explore what else they might might do for them. Can you elaborate on that as well, as you just touched on customer lifetime value and how often should you reach out to customers and how. 

[00:57:09] Zev Asch: That's one of the things that I talk about in the book. The steps that I, that I cover in the bulk of how you go about it. Our basic principles of smart business. It has nothing to do with any fancy technology or web 2.0 or butts or artifice, none of that stuff, right? Not that it doesn't matter, but at first, do the basics, get your company to operate like a Swiss watch.

[00:57:33] They still make them. They're still phenomenally reliable. And when your company operates like a Swiss watch with all the pieces work and are in sync, then you can start exploring other ways to go to the next level. But every single business owners that I work with misses many of the steps that I mentioned in the book.

[00:57:52] So you, you grab randomly any business owner in the street and you, and you ask them what is one wish you have for your business and what are they going to tell you? They're going to tell you, I need more customers. I need more business, right? Everybody wants new customers. And I said, okay, so what are you doing about it? Well, I'm spending money on marketing and I'm, and I'm yelling at my salespeople. And I said, how many customers do you have in your database?

[00:58:20] 600 a thousand. When's the last time you reached out to them. You mean, an email promotion with a discount? I said, no. When did you last time you reached out to your customers, the ones that decided to buy from you that are loyal to you and actually say, thank you. When's the last time you actually picked up the phone called randomly.

[00:58:42] Some customer says, Hey, thanks for being a customer. I appreciate your loyalty. Oh, by the way, is there anything else I can do for you? Or do you have any ideas for us to improve our service? We'd love to hear. I'm talking about real conversations, not a stupid survey monkey that you're going to sent the customers that have no time to answer, pick up the phone, talk to them.

[00:59:07] Okay. You want to do a survey on Facebook and ask customers. You could do that. Not the same as actually speaking to your customers. Why is that important? Number one, they'll tell you what you're doing wrong. If you're doing anything, they'll tell you what you're doing, right? Which you can enhance. They might give you ideas, how you can improve.

[00:59:26] And the thing that I mentioned in a book that I've seen in 30 years in the corporate world, I can't tell you, Greg, how many times I have proven this. It's not even a theory. Your existing customers are the last ones to know how much more your company does. They came to you initially with a problem and they bought something. You might have for other things they can use.

[00:59:54] But because we never reached out to them, we never asked the magic question. Is there anything else I can do for you? Is there anything else that you're challenged with that maybe a company can help you with? We don't ask them. And so they don't know that we can't, and this has happened to me time and time again, when I traveled with our salespeople and, and sometimes traveling to another country and we sit in front of a key customer and we said, look, thank you for your business.

[01:00:24] Can I give you an updated presentation about my, our company's capabilities? And it never fails. The person looks at it said I had no idea that you do that. I thought you only do this. As a matter of fact, I just issued a PO for $50,000 through another company. I'd much rather do give you the business.

[01:00:47] It's incredible that this happens all the time. Part of an untapped goldmine that every company has is your existing database of loyal customers. Right? You just neglect them because you're chasing new leads and new customers all the time. That's an easy way to get more revenue to your business.

[01:01:10] They already buy from you. You don't have to convince them of anything. You just have to educate them that there's other things you could do for them. They're going to buy because they're already buying it's. It's crazy.

[01:01:20] Greg Mills: Now you talked about segmenting customers from VIP to A, B and C. Does that kind of fit into the same realm?

[01:01:28] Zev Asch: Yes, a hundred percent. Let's say we have a database of 300 customers and these are repeat customers. Why don't we look at each customer and we segment them based on the, either the frequency or the dollar value that they purchased from. and you're going to have customers that buy a lot.

[01:01:45] Well, they're the, VIPs. The reason we call them VIP is not just to tag them, but they deserve special treatment. They deserve. Thank you. These are the people you should talk to very often, right? These are people you should stay in touch with. Make sure they're happy because if they're not, they're walking out with a nice chunk of change that you just gave up.

[01:02:07] So we segment the customers from VIP days to A customers, B customers, and C customers. And of course, it's not complicated. You could do this by frequency and dollars. And, and the goal is to move the C customers to become B customers, the B customers to become A customers and the Acer becomes VIP's.

[01:02:28] How do you move them from place to place for, from, uh, on the wrong of, of. Revenue is by paying attention to them by engaging them, not by shoving promotions. This can down the throat by, by actually educating them, entertaining them, asking them question, randomly, calling them and asking what else I can do for you.

[01:02:49] These are the things that so many business fail to do because it's resources. I need a bunch of people who are actually going to pick up the phone or do other things to engage with the customers. I need them to do other things like answer the phones and convert leads. Right. I think it's, it's a huge missed opportunity.

[01:03:10] Greg Mills: In your book, you say that people should walk in stupid every morning to their business. And I've got this one nailed. So what does that even mean? 

[01:03:22] Zev Asch: A few years ago I came across and ad agency in the UK, it's called Wieden and Kennedy. They one of the most successful, uh, agency in the world. There was a talk that, Dan Kennedy gave and he was talking about a new Honda commercial that they created that completely disrupted the commercial of a car of a Honda.

[01:03:47] And he explained that the Japanese culture and the executives were completely against the whole concept because it was a, it was actually a diesel engine that Honda came up with and the whole commercial was a diesel engine in a form of a bird flying around. And the diesel engine is so cool. And it was like a poem, right?

[01:04:13] It wasn't as nothing like a car commercial and they couldn't get past the point that this is not a car commercial. And he was talking about how you arrived at how they arrived at the commercial. And when you walk into the offices of Whitman Kennedy in the UK, as you enter the lobby, there is a mannequin that has, instead of a head, there's a blender, then there's a body.

[01:04:40] And then the mannequin holds a briefcase that says walking stupid every day. And if you look at it with Kennedy talks about, and he said, look where the one of the most successful ad agencies in the world, but every single creative meetings that we have, we start the bid recognizing that we're stupid.

[01:05:01] There were not the most creative people in the world. There were not the most, expert advertising company in the world that there are plenty of companies in the universe that are smarter than us. And at the moment that we're talking about the campaign could be actually designing a better campaign for our competitor or our client's competitor.

[01:05:23] So the walking stupid every day is a message of humility, particularly to the business owner. Then don't think for a second, that because you have a title of a president or CEO, or that you own the company that you are smarter than anybody else. As a matter of fact, in my experience, the people that I work for with the exception of one, they weren't the smartest people in the room by any stretch.

[01:05:48] . So humble yourself. You're not the smartest guy. You've got the money, but the way that you can get your company to the next level, Is by recognizing that humility is your friend, not your enemy. And by recognizing that the people around the conference room, are potentially smarter than you at give them the opportunity to show it.

[01:06:15] This is more of a culture piece of how you grow a business than marketing, but I can tell you that, um, the, the corporate culture and the way the owner of the company manages the business is a critical piece of how the company does. Critical piece. And if you have somebody at the helm who is arrogant and nasty and cathedral really berate or dismisses with other people say, or come up with. What happens.

[01:06:46] And I've seen that with clients, and I've seen it with one company that, that I helped manage. What happens is your employees stop thinking. Because they don't want to hear your criticism and dismissal. They'll just wait for you to tell them what to do. If that's the kind of business you have, you're not going to be successful.

[01:07:05] Greg Mills: Your book is out now. What's next for Zev? 

[01:07:11] Zev Asch: What's next for me is, 

[01:07:13] I want to have a, a weekly session where people bring in. There are challenges and collectively with, with me conducting the conversation, we collectively learn from each other and we help each other improve the business. There are companies that do this really well, a company like Vistige and the alternative board.

[01:07:37] They're incredibly they're, they're great, but they're expensive and it's not for everybody. Right? Uh, this is sort of like the same idea where business owners are gonna sit around the table or imaginary zoom meeting or, or a webinar that's open to everybody and we pick topics and we help each other. So sometimes I call it, I, I jokingly call it the alcoholic anonymous of, of entrepreneurship, where you come in and say, you know, hi, my name is Zev Ash.

[01:08:08] I'm a business owner and here's my problem. Right? 

[01:08:13] Greg Mills: Yeah, let's get ready to wrap this up. What's the number one piece of advice that you can give for our listeners? 

[01:08:21] Zev Asch: If you're a business owner, don't get overwhelmed by marketing because it's not overwhelming. Go back to basics. Obviously, I want everybody to buy my book because it's 40 years of real hands-on experience of how anybody can improve their business without having to have a PhD in marketing or having to rely or buy expensive stuff for people that are just going to rip you off .The stuff in the book is just basic principles of smart business ownership.

[01:08:52] And so I encourage everyone. The book is 99 cents. It's not a big investment. Might be the best dollar you spent until I raised the price in another month. Remember that very often, the key to success is right in front of you. You don't have to go search for the latest and the greatest. And my message to everyone is look at your business.

[01:09:12] Don't be afraid to uncover things that don't work, right. Fix them. The other message which we didn't talk about, uh, during this podcast is, don't underestimate your competition. Obsessively study them because there's a lot to learn, especially from good competitors. See what they're doing.

[01:09:30] Great. See if you're doing something equal or less and give them a hard time, because that's what it's about.

[01:09:39] Greg Mills: Okay. Now what's the best way for people to check you out and get in touch with you. 

[01:09:45] Zev Asch: Well, if you go to Amazon, you talk my name's Eve Ash, my book will show up. Uh, other than that, my website is Zev ash.com. Simple www dot dot com. The sections about the book I blog, uh, and, uh, you can learn about my philosophies and, and my approach to helping business owners grow their companies.

[01:10:10] Greg Mills: Okay, well, let's wrap. Thank you for being a guest on entrepreneurs over 40. 

[01:10:17] Zev Asch: It's been my pleasure.