Editor’s note: We are tremendously honored to be able to get connected with Eben Pagan – prolific entrepreneur, author and speaker – who has impacted many people’s life, particularly in the Internet Marketing scene. Out of his busy schedule, he invested his time to participate in our Q&A on the topics of web-based business, mentoring and his popular Get Altitude training products, featuring the recently launched Wake Up Productive.
Read this Q&A, and get inspired!
1. I always regard you as one of the go-to mentors when it comes to building a successful business online. Can you share with us how you got started, and how you got your first major success with your “Double Your Dating” ebook?
Well the abbreviated version is that I pretty much started from nothing. I grew up poor in the woods in Oregon and I didn’t make more than 10 dollars an hour up until my mid 20s.
I didn’t really know anyone who was successful. I didn’t even know anyone who knew anyone who was successful. So I had to really work my butt off to figure this whole success thing out for myself.
So when I struck out on my own so to say, I tried all different kinds of things from teaching music, to video production, to setting up events…
And somehow I ended up in real estate in my early 20s.
At first I was pretty miserable at it, but then I discovered direct response marketing and I eventually got better.
After my stint in real estate, I went on to start my own consulting business for real estate and mortgage companies teaching people how to sell, market, and grow their businesses. I did this for 3 years.
Around this time, I went through a phase where I was single, and I couldn’t get a date to save my life. So I started reading books, going to seminars and getting to know some dating gurus. But I found that most of the material out there were either incredibly outdated, manipulative, or just plain didn’t work.
Then I met some guys who were actually really good at dating and attraction. I started hanging out with these ‘naturals’ and watching what they did and what I found was that they were doing things that no-body else was teaching or doing.
So I watched what they did and then tried to replicate it myself until eventually I got pretty good as well.
Then in 2001, I took the new skills that I had learned and wrote “Double Your Dating” and put it online.
The day the website went live, I sold two or three copies of my book. I knew then, that I was onto something big, so I started to actively build the business.
We started just selling the ebook. Then I decided to start offering a free email newsletter. This was a big game changer because it allowed me to get my prospects email and communicate with them on a constant basis. What I learned is that many people don’t buy the first time they visit your site, so you have to follow up ten times, twenty times… fifty times… a hundred times.
After the newsletter I started experimenting with some other products. Now I’m skipping some details here, but I decided to add a continuity aspect to my business and started offering my “Dating Guru” Interview series. This was another huge inflection point in the business.
I kept experimenting with different kinds of products based off what I found my customers wanted when I talked to them, and I kept growing and growing the company.
It took me about seven years to build the company to the $20 million per year level.
2. You have mentored some of the popular experts I follow, such as Marie Forleo and Laura Roeder. What do you think is required in order for someone to achieve expert status – and success in general?
One of the patterns that I’ve been fortunate to notice over my career is the idea that “Success is Emergent”.
Most of us are taught of success as something you go after and somehow ‘take hold of’, but I haven’t found this to be true in my experience. Instead, I’ve found that success is the result of setting up and doing a combination of the right things in the right order.
When you pay attention to other successful people and you identify their most successful attributes and work on mastering those in the right order, then success will naturally emerge out of it.
Now while there is not “one” single thing that causes success directly, one of the highest leverage things you can do, and something I observe in every successful person I’ve met, is to master your time, energy, and productivity. Because when you are able to master these factors of your life you really are able to press down on ‘Archimedes lever’ and you gain the power to get a lot more done in less time than the average person. This is how you get ahead.
So to relate this back to your question, being able to master your time, energy, and productivity is definitely one of the most important things you can master to get to an expert level or achieve success in general.
3. I am intrigued in the products you are offering via your Get Altitude. Can you tell us a bit about Get Altitude, and what products you are offering for students?
When I created the vision for Get Altitude, I saw it as something where we could take entrepreneurs and speed up and shorten the time it takes to build a successful profitable business.
And the products I’ve created here at Get Altitude are all the different things that I believe you need in order to create a successful business and be a successful entrepreneur in the world.
From time management and productivity, to wealth building to marketing to high speed business growth training, each course covers a topic that I believe is essential to know. And I really see these as being the big components or blocks that you need to get handled and master, and when you do, you’ll be able to significantly grow your business and your profit and your income.
4. I run a business online with the help of a virtual team, and I am a big believer of the enormous value offered by tapping talents online. I learn that your business is run entirely online. Can you share some tips with us who want to build a business online?
Yea, its very interesting having a 100% virtual online business. We’ve had a lot of success with that and I think one of the keys really comes down to communication because you don’t see each other very often.
And one of the systems that we’ve implemented into our business and had a lot of success with is the “Daily Meeting”.
We typically have this at the start of every day and it allows our team to always have a place to connect and talk about anything, whether it has to do with work or not. It really fosters transparency and rapport among the team and helps us all clear our minds and get aligned for the day ahead.
Another thing that I’ve found to be very important when running an online business and virtual team is to know how to manage your time well.
One of the great benefits to running a virtual business at home is the ability to work your own schedule, on your own watch, but sometimes this could turn into a bad thing.
If you don’t have the right daily habits and time management systems in place, its very easy for things to get out of control and I’m speaking from experience here. You start lacking structure in the day and work time bleeds into ‘living’ time. And you may even get to a point where you’re literally “working” all day, but very little gets done at the end of it.
This is not only detrimental to your own work but it also sets a bad example for your virtual team since they are also working on their own with little supervision.
When I started implementing proven time and energy management techniques into my life and also sharing them with my team, my businesses and profits literally skyrocketed.
5. Any advice to our readers who want to be more successful in their business – and life?
Get good at helping others succeed and win – at whatever game they are playing. If you can take your attention and put it on helping others get what they want, you can win a lot bigger. I think it was Zig Ziglar that says you can get anything you want – if you help enough other people get what they want.
At first, you might have to help others win more than you, which is tough. It’s hard to see someone getting a bigger piece of the pie. But if you help others succeed for long enough, you get the hang of success itself, which you can use to help yourself win.
If you want to learn more about Eben Pagan and his latest training program, Wake Up Productive, click here