Find out the best path for success if you're just getting started (or if you're stuck).
I think that was one of the big mistakes I made when I was in my 20s was I started learning all this stuff. I loved it all, and I tried to become the guy who did all the things.
Russell Brunson: What's up everybody? This is Russell Brunson. Welcome back to the Marketing Secrets podcast. Today I'm pumped to get a question from Zac Field. As you guys know, recently, we added a little section to the Marketing Secrets homepage at marketingsecrets.com, where you can go and ask me a question, and I'm ... try to answer them here live on the podcast. Zac is a high school senior who's wondering what would be my advice for someone his age who's trying to get into this marketing world?
First off, I'm going to cue up Zac's question. When we come back, I will jump in and we'll have some fun.
Zac Field: Hey Russell, my name's Zac. I'm a senior in high school, and my question's just kind of cliche, but what's your biggest advice for someone my age looking to pursue a career in marketing, and what the next steps should be? Because right now, in school, we're talking a lot about applications for college and finding your career path and what you want to do. And I really want to do marketing. I think it's just such a cool career, but I want to know, if you were in my shoes, what your next steps would be. Thank you so much.
Russell: Okay, so first off, Zac, dude, you are so lucky to be in high school and knowing what you already know and having some of this stuff. Man, it took me years to discover the things that for you, I've tried to give you on a silver platter. So, I'm pumped for you because you're starting so far ahead of everyone else.
When I got started, I was probably 22, 23 years old and everyone's like, "Man, you're the young guy. You started so early, I wish I was you." Look, you're starting even earlier, which is so cool. So I would say, the biggest thing is, inside of this world of marketing and sales and funnels and everything, there's so many sub things. Everyone says they want to get into marketing, but what does that mean? So, my first question for you, Dick, what is the thing that you're most passionate about, right? Because there's so much. Even from the very beginning, it's cutting the analytical versus the ... left brain versus right brain. Some people are into the art of this game, some people are into the math of this game, right?
A good example, John Parkes on my team, he likes math. He likes Excel sheets, that kind of stuff. He thrives on buying ads and doing all this stuff over there, where I'm more like, spreadsheets are the worst thing in the world. They stress me out. I don't want to see them, I don't want to talk about them. And for me, it's like the art, the copy and the words and the vision and that kind of stuff. So the first question is, are you right brain or left brain? Which side?
And then from there now it's like, okay, now inside of that, what things get you most excited? Is it ads? Because on ads you got both sides. You have the creative and you've got the analytical side. Same thing with email. You got the words and you also got the open rates and deliveries and stuff like that. There's sales funnels, and inside of funnels, there's design, there's copy, but there's also the connection and getting things working and the analytics. So it's kind of going ... First level is right brain, left brain. Then what gets you excited? And then keep going deeper and deeper and deeper.
And find one thing, the thing that's the most exciting to you, and then go and master it. It can be as simple as, I like books. I like book funnels. Or maybe I like webinars, or I like high-ticket funnels, or I like driving Facebook ads, or I like TikTok ads, or ... I don't like Facebook ads, but I do like the numbers or the retargeting campaigns, or I like email, all right? Whatever, Dick, but it's picking one thing and then going deep on that one thing, and initially it's then providing that as a service.
I have a good friend, Dave Miz, who, when I first met Dave, he was a really good designer, and then other things. And somewhere in his career of the last 20 years, he decided the thing he loved the most was email and his email analytics and delivery and split testing and stuff like that. And so first it was just him doing it, and he got really, really good doing it for himself, and he made money doing it himself. And then he started bringing on some clients and some other people, and he did some work for me in the day. And he only specializes in email campaigns for e-commerce businesses, so it's all those levels deep. He got really good at it himself, and then he started doing it for a couple other people.
And I tried to hire ... I literally, last month, I was like, "Hey Dave, can I just hire you full-time to work for me?" And he messages back, he's like, "Man, if you had offered me that 10 years ago, it'd be amazing." He's like, "But I have a big company now with 40 employees who are all writing email campaigns for thousands of e-com brands." I was like, holy crap. He took the one little thing, and he became a master at it himself, right? Did it for himself, did it for other people, did it for more people, more people, eventually started training people, and then it became this huge business now, right?
So Zac, for you, I'd do the same thing. It's really figuring out, in this whole ecosystem, I imagine this huge ... It's an ecosystem, and inside the ecosystem, there's a whole bunch of things. There's traffic, conversions, copy, funnels, all this stuff. Figure out where in the ecosystem are you most excited? And then going in there and figuring out, what's the niche or the thing that you want to own, that you want to be most passionate about? And then starting there and trying to become the best in the world at that one thing, right?
I mean, who knew that email sequences for e-commerce people was going to be that huge thing? But he's built a huge company out of that. And I could tell you thousands of people, people who have specialized in TikTok, people who specialize in challenges, people who specialize in email sequences. I had somebody the other day I met who they specialize in taking the perfect webinar format, but doing it in email sequences for coaches who are doing challenges. That's how small the niche is, but how many authors and speakers are doing challenges right now that have horrible email campaigns that you could go and you could plug this thing into? Tons, right? Thousands of them.
And so it's coming back to that, trying to figure those things out, because the world is so big, and if you try to become an expert at all of the things, you're never going to do it. I think that was one of the big mistakes I made when I was in my 20s was I started learning all this stuff. I loved it all, and I tried to become the guy who did all the things. And I still remember going to an event one time, and at the event, and there's all the marketing people there. And I remember Jeff Walker was the product launch guy, and Brad Fallon was the SEO guy, and Brad Callen was also an SEO guy. And then there was someone that ... Perry Marshall was the PPC guy and John Carlton was the copy guy. And everyone had their specialties, right?
But I was the young cool kid who was like, in my head, I'm like, "Oh, I'm better than everyone. I know all these things. I could do all of them." And I remember somebody asking me out in the lobby during one of the breaks, "Well, what do you do?" I'm like, "Oh, I do it all." "Well, what do you specialize in?" I'm like, "Well, I can do all the things." And he looked at me, and he's like, "Well, that's Jeff Walker. He's good at product launches." I'm like, "Oh, I can do product launches." He's like, "Well, there's John Carlton, He's a copywriter." I'm like, "Oh, I can do copy." And I was like, because I was skilled in all the things, I was trying to do all of them, and the guy ended up walking away from me and signing for somebody else's program because somebody else was a specialist, right?
People want specialists. I think our ego wants us to be generalists because, like, "Oh, look at all the stuff I know, the breadth and the width of my knowledge," whereas the reality is, people want specialists. So what can you specialize in? And for me, my company never got past a million, a million and a half, $2 million a year for over a decade until I decided to specialize in funnels, and I was going to become the best in the world at funnels. And then when I did that, I just planted my foot in the ground and I was like, that was going to be the thing I was going to do, it started to grow.
And now, you have to remember, 10 years ago, when I made that decision, funnels weren't a thing yet. They weren't even called funnels. They were called sales processes and pipelines and stuff like that. It was a new market, it was a new thing. And now you're like, "Oh, Russell, it's so obvious. It's this huge market." But it wasn't then, right? But I made it big. I made it big because I was so passionate because I cared so much about it, because I wanted to go and write books on and do courses and start teaching on it. And so, I became the best in the world of that piece.
And so for you, Zac, man, I would recommend doing that. And if you go down the path and you find out in a year from now, I actually hate email, or I actually hate Facebook ads, or whatever, that's okay. You can change it. But the first is just learning it, and then initially, again, it's doing it for yourself. Number two, then it's starting doing it for service for other people, right?
And then from there, you have different options, building an agency, or turning it into info products, or coaching or ... There's different things you can do off of that. But the key is taking your stake in the ground, going deep on it, becoming the best in the world, do it for yourself, do it for other people, and then decide, okay, I'm going to do this for other people as a coach consultant, or as an agency, and then keep running with it. And if you decide down the line you don't like it, shift and change. There's nothing wrong with that as well.
So hopefully that helps, man. I'm excited for you. I just could tell by the intelligence for your question that you're going to be successful with this. It's just kind of finding out what gets you the most fired up that you can spend your day becoming the best in the world at. If you do that, that's what's going to make it so you can really have tons of success and build whatever you want to in the long term. So hope that helps. Appreciate you.
And for anyone else who's listening, I hope you got some value from that as well, especially those who have been struggling. You don't have to be a high school kid for that answer to apply. If you've been struggling at any part of this business, hopefully that'll help you guys to get better. Thanks so much, you guys, for listening, and if you have questions you want me to ask ... or to answer, go to marketingsecrets.com, post the answer in there, and hopefully I have a chance to answer your question live on one of these upcoming shows. Thanks so much you guys, and we'll talk to you soon. Bye, everybody.