DJ has been helping entrepreneurs build profitable businesses around their passion for helping others.
So, hi everyone, and welcome to The Virtual Entrepreneur, the title of today's interview is
How to get started on building a profitable online business and interview with DJ so banjo.
My name is Herbert Innocent and today I'm talking with building profitable business expert DJ Sobanjo about how to get started with building profitable businesses, DJ has been helping entrepreneurs build profitable businesses around their passion for helping others.
So welcome, DJ Sobanjo Really excited to be here with you and with your audience. DJ, what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna jump into a question in terms of how you got started building businesses though so my first set of questions are gonna really focus on your personal experiences and your journey going you know, from starting businesses, built from studying business building business, all the way up to where and how you got so far so my first question is, could you tell us a little bit about yourself in terms of your background, education and experiences on building profitable businesses. Right.
I came back to England to report in England with live in Nigeria and then I came back to England 2000 and then leaving university left literally left university came back here and went. So basically I was looking to get a job with my family.
Now, about this time, a friend of mine read Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki, you know that workbook and then I read the book and then she got really pumped up and excited. We really need to read this book so
I could give it to you No, and I looked through the book and I read it.
And I think at that point he was told that we needed to look for something that we can do right about the same time a mentor of mine, his name is Sam somebody and you might know him and then he came to England and we met with him and then he was like you know what is it that you're doing about your financial future.
I was like well I'm just kind of looking to move forward in my career, moving into becoming a supervisor, becoming a manager, he said well that's cool, but what is it you're doing by the side that goes to MultiPlan I'm thinking, I don't know, I thought about that, you know, in fact, you know with what he asked for that was when, when I really felt that we need to look for something that we could do by the at the time all the station assistant with London Underground Funny enough, and that's what we started looking at, you know, at the time we got involved, I did eventually my wife got involved in an industry would have to move and I have a love hate relationship with Him that for direct sales network marketing.
I got involved in 2002 April 2000 Remember, and the reason why I remember was I called him just totally, we had our first.
And that's why that stays in them. Right, so that was what I got started, and I was all pumped up and I was excited because there will be millionaires in the room who came from America, they came to the UK, and they were talking about how they became millionaires with this thing. It's so simple and all of that and I was pumped up and excited.
And so I got started in April, thinking that I was going to be a millionaire in a couple months, quickly you realise that getting started in business, to me the first video to help you to appreciate it how much I did not know about. And I think that's the thing for a lot of us just not that many of us don't know how much we don't.
And we realised that we have so many blind spots. And that's the reason why entrepreneurs get exploited.
And I just get exploited.
Back in the day, and there are so many entrepreneurs who are getting us to give us so much, they don't know, for people who are looking to exploit our ignorance. to do that and sell, you know, fellas, you know, all sorts of shiny objects that don't really work out really work, but they pay money, and I did a lot of that now. If you ask me sorry I'm doing, I'm doing. Looking back, Jay. That time, what was the most important thing that you brought to the table. And I think it was the least. Because I won't lie to you in the beginning it was tough.
I failed a lot. And it wasn't easy.
I remember one time thing in front of my computer and crying because nothing just seemed to be working. I had enough belief to get up and going. The next day, so I'm just saying that retrospectively just thinking back now because I know many people who got started when I first started, offer I started doing we're not in the game today. It's a different man than than than No. Am I more hard working than they are right. So what's the difference, the difference. I need to keep on taking.
Yes, rather than just give up on the brain and thank goodness and you know and that brought me to where I am. Yeah, I think one of the biggest thing we have been taught, we talked to even us here on this radio the past few weeks ago, was belief and I think for a lot of Intrapreneurs, it is true you know you go in with this knowledge it's going to be a very quick sharp win but you realise you have to learn it's a whole learning process to get to where you want to go.
So thank you so much for really making it clear I think for them.
For me, even for everyone on the show getting experience just on that bit there should be enough value to really give them, you know, it's a testimonial of the path you've taken, if that makes sense. And I think for anyone who is on this journey, they may be feeling isolated alone and even, you know, wondering, will this thing ever really work and just seeing someone else saying you know it, it's a hard road it is a lonely hard road, but it gets there at the end.
So yeah I think that's a really powerful message where you have the end my next question is, what roadblocks, did you face early on and, and how did you come in so if you pick one roadblock that you faced and then how did you overcome it.
What you call customer. That was the big challenge that was and that roadblock in trying to overcome that I consistently came across other roadblocks. So when I got started in the business I was in at the time of network marketing.
We said go for friends and family. Right. And then I went to a few friends and family I had an all of them said thanks but no thanks. But they then said, Don't waste time on the internet, it's a face to face, belly to belly button. This was back in the day, not everyone, but, but, but, I just so but I needed to make this succeed, I didn't know-how.
I think for me the biggest roadblock was just, I didn't know how to get customers and so in trying to do that I consistently came across more roadblocks now.
How did I overcome that real good question?
I literally tried and failed my way to success. I can't describe it better than that because I can, I could literally give you, I mean I tried running ads in local shops. I don't think I was able to really get any business from that and when I say local, I was going across, you know, from the whole rented area going into local shops and then, then it will be like you know the five comes from the shop here, the 10 pound here we are on their way out there.
I want to play from shop yourself and putting these things in the window. Did it work for me. I tried flyers, I tried going out and handing out flyers I hated doing that.
Did that work for me?
I tried advertising in local newspaper advertising and national packaging. I tried, generating my own book about running ads online, I was running online as far back as 2003. Now, then what happened was some of the things that we were some of these things. So, if you ask me how do I overcome these roadblocks.
Unfortunately I didn't have a lot of guidance to to learn from. So I had to learn from my experience, which means I had to fail and learn from my failures, and then when I succeed I learned from my success until I began to identify the toxins of what was working and as I then began to identify this and I began to implement some of these things, and then develop my own model for generating generating customers into my business and this took a while I was only about 18 months. Okay, in the month in my business.
I made more money than the first 17 months put together, because it clicked and see and that's the thing for many of us is we quit when it doesn't work, but the fact that it's not working simply means we haven't figured it out yet.
However, if we even when it doesn't work, there's a lesson to learn. As long as we keep on keeping on. We will even if you have no mentors, the only things that you have to remember, it will take a long time, but as long as you don't quit, you will get there eventually. The challenge with many of us is the disappointment of failure, kill our belief, and then we give up, so roadblock. Growth look I had was ignorant.
I didn't know how to get customers, and the business is all about getting customers and business partners, know how to do it.
And so because of that I couldn't get results.
I, you can see, I mean, I have. I mean I became a professional, but I also became a professional student of the business and a professional student. So, I look back, no I have not worked in that space now for over 10 years. But what I learned in those years when I was failing and sent to me of money over the years. If I had given up then, you know I probably will be stuck in a career that would probably be beneficial because I can't ever prove themselves in corporate, you know, it will be nowhere near where I am, and I would not be the man that I am.1 I think that makes a lot of sense, especially the importance of mentor they I think you also highlighted that key element there having someone who has been on your journey that you are trying to go, and then learning from their mistakes just means you can make for us, beginning intrapreneurs means that we can make less mistakes, even for returning intrapreneurs going into different niches and different markets.
There's a lot to be learned in every single market from what I'm seeing from what I'm learning from other business owners. So thank you for that and then my other question is, you touched a little bit on, I suppose. The difference between when you started and today, how business seems to have changed, and I wanted to ask, how is the world of building profitable businesses different now than when it got started if you tie it up. If you had to highlight that in a very small key points. And starting now. I think the difference is back in the day there was very little information. Now there is too much conflicting information. So, in, back in the day, the challenge was to try to figure things out for yourself because there was very little expected that the world was changing that we will transition from offline worlds an online world and the offline world will still work. And so for people like me who are looking to start to leverage the Internet to build our businesses, that wasn't unknown.
Not surprising, if it works to be adopted. If it doesn't work, then look for something else to tweak it.
Today it's different.
Today the concern is overwhelm, I mean, there's just so everybody right now is an expert. When everyone's trying to sell their expertise to entrepreneur, you know, everyone's trying to sell the car, she's been doing it online, and online simply just by going into Google there, even if you go to a website you're being bombarded you go onto social media being bombarded for pretty much everywhere you go, you're being people who are Trump you're promising that they have the secret.
So we've gone from a world where we didn't have information to a world where there was there's so much conflicting information that right now. We have many constipated entrepreneurs.
Entrepreneurs that don't too much that don't have results. That's very conflicting information, one moment that thinking of doing one thing and then the next day, the video that he was making something else that sold them something, a different idea, and now they no longer were thinking of looking for, then I'm thinking that this other thing is so much. The challenges are still the same thing that fills the train thing which is equal the number of people who are really succeeding is small compared to those who aren't the only difference is the reason why it's so different.
Back in the day it was because it was hard to access information.
These days it's because there's so much information, it's, it's distracting it's confusing and conflicting, and so overwhelm is a lot of people have been so overwhelmed, and also intimidated, that they're not able to consistently find a path to success so it's really fascinating just, I mean I've had the privilege of being in both situations and seeing the pros and the cons, you know, now you can access information, then you will not be easily distracted.
You know so they both have their pros and their cons and but you know but it's really important to seeing how the world has evolved over the last two years,
I think the biggest point that I'll take, and I'll highlight any new entrepreneurs from everything that you say they would be they so much information that it's easy to get caught up looking for that new shiny object that seems to be the quickest path, but in reality, it's just a shiny object, and you can't really see the bottom of the iceberg and all the things that you have to learn to support yourself. so yeah that's a really powerful key point to keep in mind for any lessons.
And the other thing I wanted to ask here was if you had to start all over again with building a profitable business in the world of today, with today's tools today's time constraints, and other factors,
What would you do more of?
Start a business from scratch today, right now, what I would do is I would never talk. First of all, why because the greatest commodity or the most valuable commodity in our world is its attention.
You see, we are in a world where information is more valuable because literally, the internet is flooded with information.
However, what we're struggling with is attention.
You know, I fundamentals of building a big bit of building a solid business. Right and if you get the chance you can talk about that.
But what I would be looking at is how I need to find a way to get the attention of the people who fit the profile of my ideal premium because when I get their attention what I do is critical when you're listening to this, this is really important.
What you do when you have people's attention, determine if they're going to give you more of their attention. And if you don't have their attention, you can't get there.
This is really critical I'll repeat this because this is critical. What you do when you have people's attention, determines if they're going to give you more of their attention, and if you're not able to get their attention, it's going to be uncomfortable for you to get there.
So, I will be looking at, I know, I know the quality of what I have and I know that I have the capabilities and the resources to be able to help people to move forward to that next level of support.
But the challenge is going to be how do I get your attention. And that's what I'm going to be looking at and it's about how can I best in getting the attention of the people who fit the profile of my ideal premium buyer so that I can move them along to a point where they will buy from me getting from that what I would focus on. And there are different ways of doing that but again it's about playing to your strengths. Okay, that makes sense.
So if you want me to clarify, I think it makes sense but I suppose one thing maybe I'd like to, clarify, is when you saying, playing to your strengths to get that attention, how do you put that in terms of getting that attention?
and making useful use of it so that you can progress with your ideal premium buyers, to the next level as well as you benefiting from that,
how do you put those two together?
I am more of a writer, right, which means that if you're looking to get the best out of me, make make a phone call, and sit down at a consultation, rather than sending me an email and wanting to reply, I mean I could still write but you get the effect out of me from the vocal interaction.
I connect with my audience with better interaction, whether they're watching me, or whether they're listening to me, or whether we're on the phone or on the video compensation or whether it's through a video or a webinar for whatever. Well, that way. So if I have a person's attention and they give me enough of their time to listen to me.
I know that I'm going to be able to get them to a point where it will make sense for them to invest in the next level of support. So first of all, that means that I was looking for leverage whatever allows you to do that.
Now, I have friends and I have clients who primarily, they do better with written communication than spoken communication.
Now I'm not going to say to them what video is the way. Everybody's doing video we've got to stop.
Got to be in a place of strength, there's other ways you can repurpose that video, but they want to play to their strengths they want to be writing articles, they want to be doing the blog posts and things like that, why because if they can get a person's attention on their content, then the focus.
So for example, if I know that if I, if a person watches my video for five minutes, they're more likely to take action than if they read my original content provided that for some people it's the other way around.
And the other thing is it's easier for me to create folk and content that connect with my audience, that it is for me to create the icon to create good written content.
But I don't enjoy it. I'm good at it, but it stresses me out, but for me to be spoken content I can do that. And for that reason, I should be looking to be spoken compared to engage with the audience targeting for some other people.
The fact that they need to speak stresses them, but if they're going to write to you effortlessly, it makes sense for them to look at using written content to engage back home.
So first of all, it is the content, right, to really align with your strengths, but guess what everybody else is saying, but get that people are saying video is this video is an extra cent of the internet.
That's what we mean when we talk about the shiny object syndrome they're distracting. You know your strengths you know that if you try to the time it takes you to do one video, you could do five written pieces of patience.
For me the time it takes me to do one written piece of content I could easily do 10 videos. So, you know, why am I, you know I don't care what anybody says about how powerful that wiki word is I know it is.
But my for my core is doing ocean content because that's my friend, I'm good at this, and he was effortlessly written content.
I'm good at it but he stresses me now. So, this, These are some of the things that there's no right or wrong and it doesn't matter which ones are better what's most important, which ones weren't.
And so you've got to be careful and this is easy for entrepreneurs who are listening to this, is you really need to know the challenges personally. Many of, let me quickly share with so many of us who are entrepreneurs. We know. We know our solution. Very well. So we, so for example let's think of. Give me an example of an entrepreneur who has a product that solves a problem anyone. So I suppose the entrepreneur hack has created a new platform that allows people to learn things online.2 Right, so I know my platform very well. I know very well and I know why it's better than the other platforms out there because, you know, I know I've done my research and I know why it's better.
I know I could like use the other one and I use the other one and they don't have this and they don't have that. So a lot of the time when I'm communicating, I focusing on why my product is better than the other product.
I know the product, but you know what I don't know my audience, you know, who knows I don't know, I don't know myself.
Now why is this important and I'm describing right now, I'm describing, I would say my guestimation, or I could look science behind this but I would say about 95% of entrepreneurs, they know their product, they know their stuff. And so most of their communication is about their stuff. They don't know their audience, you need to know your audience more than they know themselves.
Why because, when you have to sit when attention is the most important thing, what you say when you have their attention right how effective it is, is dependent on how big the problem is many of us talk about our stuff. We talk about our solution.
So I'll be talking about my, my might my solution might my, my online course courses that I've created, everything's all about it. But you know what no one cares about your courses. They don't care about your horse. They care about themselves.
They care about their dreams and their aspirations they care about their goals, they care about these fears and the worries that frustrations and difficulties they're facing and they care about the things that they're not able to do they care about all the money that was spent with them and then not able to be able to deliver on what they promised because they don't have that what they care about, but you are not aware of their reality.
So when you're talking, as an entrepreneur and this is competent It's okay, don't feel bad when I say this, this is just correction if you're listening to this right, so a lot of the time when I listen to most entrepreneurs.
Most entrepreneurs are.
They think they're talking to their audience, but actually, they're just talking to themselves because they are talking about their stuff, but it's not relatable to their audience, because they're not connecting with their audience.
So, even when you're not able to create the connection that moves them to the next level in getting to learn about your audience, you've got to learn about them to really get to know them, and you've got to be able to articulate their reality, in a way that they can relate with.
So, what I mean by that is when you are, whether it's written or spoken communication. You want to be talking about very normal stuff about so for example, online for one half an example.
You know, it will be something along these lines with people who create online, right, when you create an online course, you do that because you want a way to be able to take your knowledge and aptitude in a way that one, that you could sell it to other people, too, they can have a good experience going through your content that they, there's ways for them to be able to consume it.
Also, go all the way through because what's the point of having people find your course, and out of 100 people who buy it, only maybe five of them actually finish the course, you know, so if you're like me when you look at those sites and it makes you feel bad, you almost feel like money and you're not really able to help them, you know, And so we know we know that your motivation.
And he has to build things into this platform to help you make money, your motivation is you want to help people, and you know yes it's Poker courses but you don't want to, you know, but they're not getting the results, and if they're not getting results. And I know that for many of us who are getting a lot of sales.
That's not perspiration, yes there are many platforms out there, you know, who are, which are very good at helping you sell your courses deliver it doesn't really help people get to the place where, you know, and put them in the heart that can be disheartening, you begin to feel like we're cheating people. You see what I'm doing now,2 just by doing what I did that. So what I did that was, that was the creator of the product, talking about the frustration of people who create courses to maybe this particular system really is about a program that enables people to stay engaged and maybe selling composition of the program, but you're still communicating from the perspective of your user, you don't just focus on your program he talks about them.
So, what happens is, that's where you really get people engaging forward but you can't say that. If you don't know that there's a problem.
Most entrepreneurs, They, you know, they know too much about this stuff about their audience, so they're not able to connect with them in a powerful way that gets people to a point where they want to take control they struggle to get by.1 That kind of makes sense. I think that man a lot of sense I think it made it too entertaining for example I think that story really summed it up together. And what I'm gonna do is saying that you're gonna be taking all of your time.
I'm gonna try and ask two more questions, and one of my question here that I have for you is, and maybe to make it to pack it in a way that will really help our entrepreneurs the virtual entrepreneurs who have a passion for business and helping others to help them take the next step, what final thoughts do you have to help motivate these intrapreneurs. To get started, or take, you know, or start taking in building that profitable business and taking it to the next level like you have done.2 What's the one thing I would say, I would say get help with that so broad, because we're in a marketplace right now where there's so many charlatans who aren't the people's money. So, what I would say is, people in freshman learning get a lot of the free stuff. Right. And then when you follow people for a while, but guess what I'm going to say right now. Forget the flashy stuff. Right.
The fact that a person is making money doing something does not mean they can help you make it critical I'm going to say this one now see the ability to make money and the ability to help someone else make money to be able to make money, you just need to know how to help people you've got the two different things.
And right now we have a lot of marketers who are positioning themselves as the fact that I can market, and I can prove to you with my numbers and listen to this right, that I've been able to sell this stuff, and I can help them do it.
But not every good driver could make it the driving instructor.
So if you're looking to get help, if not from those. This is gonna be really hard because this is really the reality is, if you want to, I wish I could change for myself.
It is getting a mentor.
I didn't have a mentor, I know that I bet for a very long time. And I was able to succeed because I was able to keep my unbelief going, and I didn't allow having them, I wanted a mentor, I just didn't have when I was looking at them, find out.
Right now the challenge today is everybody on their country call themselves a mentor, and usually they're just off because they don't really have the ability or the desire to help, but the thing is you can test, you know, don't be in a harvest of the same exact mentor.
Take your time follow people for a while and get by, find some of their stuff, you know and see what that relationship is like until there's some resonance, and then get to a point where you know you can find someone who you believe has the ability, and has the and also has the heart to help you.
Some people genuinely care I mean, I focus on people who are building partners, people who really care about something, not just people who are in it for the month, and that's why my communications different, it's one of the reasons why I think, you know, I've only ever shared, you know, my I don't share my income a great deal.
I think I did it.
There was one time when I did it and the reason why I did it with this person I'll just quickly share this was I worked with this person who people from the present with me. And she, you know she supported she needed help with the business and then during the compensation. I couldn't get anything. She just kept, I think she was trying to validate that he knows.
So, I'm trying to guide her and then she dumped me let me know what I'm talking about. So I'm like, Okay, how much did you make last month. Okay, what about a month before.
And then I told him how much time made to disclose my money and I told her, and I said well, you have to see that's what I'm making this, you know, and what I was thinking, I don't know about 40 times what she made. Right. And I'm like, you have an opportunity right now to tap into watering know for half an hour, but you seem to be spending this time trying to prove to me that you know what I'm struggling to see how I can help you, And thankfully that helped, because she I think it just dawned on her that what she was seeing is not very small because I wish I had someone who I could sit down with back in the day, who would give me 30 minutes of their time.
You know, so that's, that's one thing that I would say get help and then be humble when you're being held. It doesn't make sense to try to prove someone who's trying to help you, that you know you're right, you're not going to someone. You don't go to someone because they know what you don't know even though that's a part of it, it's because you believe they can help you get. No, no, but2 pretty much what you want to look for. I mean, I hope, business owners who are making a truckload more money than I was making, and I was able to help them improve because I, why because my capability is to help them. See that's the thing people say, Well, I'm not going to be coached by someone who's got to keep what I want to keep an eye on and I'm Coach multimillionaire.
I've coached people who are CEOs of billion-dollar companies. Right, I've coached them and able to help them improve their productivity and their performance, why because coaching is a skill that is very different.
Unfortunately, the word coach has been abused these days. Right now, basically, hey, it's something I'm going to call myself a coach. And that's the new model. But really what I will say is you need to get it. But the challenge is when I say that a safe world because a coach of the basically a coach, the person who has the ability to help achieve what you have the potential to achieve, but you're not currently able to achieve.1 I think that made a lot of sense there Yeah, that's a really powerful way to summing up in terms of, you know who to look for when you're looking for the mentor, and especially what to keep in mind.
So, I'm gonna bring this interview to the conclusion and thank you so much DJ for this great interview, but I want to ask you one more question which is can you tell us a little bit about the book because I saw that you have a book at the discovery called Magic at Discovery called Magic, calm, and more specifically what I want you to tell us is, how does it help intrapreneurs with having a conversation with prospective buyers that, you know works for people who need buyers, but don't feel comfortable with manipulating sales tactics because I saw this is one of the biggest topics in one of your book. Discovery call magic really if and how to have conversations with prospects is really primarily for service-based business entrepreneurs.
So, if you sell services or anything that you know, it's its highest.
So, it would really require a conversation before people buy, you know, so for example if it were a company who would listen to. We're not going to invest a million pounds just by watching the webinar. Very true. Yeah.
I'm not going to invest 10,000 pounds, just because I watch the webinar. So, having the conversation that buyer was out of habit. It's a skill and it's something that I've been able to develop over the years and how did I develop it was actually when I was doing direct sales network marketing because, like I said, I began to learn how to tell everybody I was talking to, You know, they said no, so I had to begin to learn how to sell, and I did get better, but I hate it. I still do like to have a video and I'd like to share the link to the video where I shared my story.
So I'm sharing with you and share it with your leaders as well, where I shared my story about why I why I hate selling right at my school. And I just, I didn't, I didn't feel comfortable I knew, I knew what I was doing with this tactic you know overcoming the objections and, you know, all that other stuff. I don't feel comfortable with it because it's a, it's really a push of the trying to make the mission which is to give me their money. Right. So I'm trying to sell. Now most of you will be like, yes, yes, for discovery call, magic literally turns, where instead of you trying to sell to them, you have a conversation where you get to a point where they want to offer more than you want them to happen. Think about that for a moment.
So think about a product that you offer a service that you offer, and you have a 30-minute conversation with someone, and at the end of that conversation, Think one point you have more than you want them to have a question Do you need to sell it. Now you don't need to sell it anymore. Yeah. It just, it basically it builds on the premise of what I call the.
If people believe they buy, if they don't they hesitate.
So the purpose of a discovery session is really to help trigger those core beliefs, during that conversation. So buying what you have to offer, becomes the ideal next step for them.
So it's them by selling it, It just becomes the perfect thing it's just like when you're going to have a consultation with your doctor, right, as they you know they do everything they asked a bunch of questions they you know they put the funny thing they put on your call. You know, and they look in your eyes or look in your mouth, and protect the questions.
Different their hearts in the morning but not as often as somebody that may say, Okay, from what I've seen, you know, you know, if you think you have this.
And you sometimes have to paint here and then it goes into your thinking, wow, how did we come to know all this stuff. Well, you, it's, it's amazing that they know this so for them it's just a normal thing for them, it's the same thing for us to expert in your face because we know that you got to know your audience more than they know themselves, so they begin to believe that you have the solution to their problem, just the same.
When they go and have an x-ray, you're not going to be saying, I object to having an accident, you're thinking, you know if the x is going to help me get where I want. Do I do it. And that's pretty much what magic is when you do it properly, you don't need to sell, it's just a natural progression, it becomes a natural progression in that book I kind of break it all down for you.
Everyone who is a service-based entrepreneur needs to rediscover call magic. It really will transform your business, it will make you more money.
The bottom line, no longer need to sell, we just have conversations that help people get to a point where buying becomes the ideal next step so if they go to discovery calm and I think they can get the book there and it will make a big difference in business. Oh,