On this special 3 part series, you get to hear Russell’s presentation at the ROR (Return on Relationships) Symposium! Russell discusses the importance of what he calls the “Dream 100”, and how it helps create relationships that support both his business and his personal life. Check out RORUniversity.com to learn more!
Hey. What's going on, everybody? This is Russell Brunson. Want to welcome you back to The Marking Secrets podcast. I got something special for you guys over the next three episodes. I'm actually on vacation right now, Thanksgiving vacation. My wife and my kids and I are all in Kauai, Hawaii. You might hear them giggling in the background depending on how well this microphone picks up noise. And so, I didn't have a chance to record a podcast for the next couple episodes, but before I left on vacation, I actually had a chance to be part of a really cool summit that my friend, Christopher Voss put on called The ROR Symposium. And he had me as one of his keynote speakers, and he had me talk about just my history, my journey, using relationships, and joint ventures, and things like that. The Dream 100, as I call it, to build my business and everything we've done over the last almost 20 years now.
And so, it was a really special presentation. It was one that I came to with notes, but not PowerPoint slides and things like that. It was more, I just wanted to kind of share from my heart. And if you know Christopher Voss you know he's a very emotional person and he brings that emotion. And apparently, I found out afterwards, all the speakers end up crying. In fact, I did as well during my presentation. So, there's something really special in the middle that you'll find out about. But anyway, I hope you really enjoy these. They're going to help you to learn how to build joint ventures, how to find your Dream 100, how to build better relationships with people, and how to turn that into more business and help you to get your mission out there to change more people's lives.
If you don't know who Christopher Voss is, I recommend following him. He told me that the best site to send you guys to... I said, "Where should I send people to listen who want to go deeper with you and learn more about relationships and how to build businesses using them?" And he said theroruniversity.com would be the best place for you guys to go. So, if you want to go deeper with Chris, go to roruniversity.com, check out what he's got there. And with that said, I'm going to cue the theme song. When we come back, you have a chance to hear the first part of my keynote presentation.
As I was kind of thinking through this, I was like, "Man, there's 30-something speakers coming. Everyone's talking about different ways to do this ROR, return on relationship game. And everyone's got different ideas and things, and it got me to back, man, almost 19, 20 years ago now. And so I... If you guys are cool with it, I just want to do some story time and tell you guys my story and some of the things along the journey that I tried, that I... failures, the successes, specifically inside of this relationship, and joint venture partners, and things like that. And hopefully, it'll give you guys some comfort. Because everyone starting different points and sometimes you look at someone like me like, "Oh, well, Russell knows Tony Robbins, and Dan Kennedy," and da, da, da.
But there was a day, 18, 19, 20 years ago where I was a little kid scared out of my mind awkwardly trying to message people pre-Facebook. So, I'm sending emails and trying to... and it was scary, and hard, and so hopefully, it'll give you some faith in wherever you are in your journey. Just like, "Okay, this is right. It's going to be good." It's going to be for some of us, especially the introverts like me, this is going to be something that kind of stretches you and feels uncomfortable sometimes, but then it can become something you really love and enjoy and gives you the ability to change the world at a level you never thought was possible. So, that's kind of my game plan. Then after that, we can open for some Q&A and... or whatever we want to do. Or we can celebrate, have a party, or we can sing Christopher's song and let him have a nap. Hey, whatever we want to do, it'll be fun.
So, looking back, it's funny, because when I got started in this business, I was still in college. So, I had just met my beautiful wife, Colette, who I think we're celebrating our... I think it's our 20th anniversary this summer, which is crazy. So, she's stuck around my chaos for this long and she's... Gosh, she's the best. But we had just gotten married and I was trying to figure out how to support her. I was wrestling and I didn't want to quit wrestling, so I'm like, "How do I wrestle and do all these things at once?" And so, I did what most people do and I went to Google and typed in how to make money. Right? Which, who here has done that at one point in your career? And you go on this rabbit trail, right? Of like, "Whoa, there's a lot of things to do." And everyone's got a different thing, and you start joining email newsletters. You know what those are at first and you start getting these emails from all these people, and then for me, it was like I was reading blogs and then I was joining... They didn't have Facebook groups back then. They had forums.
So, I was joining the Warrior forum and How-To Court forum, and then... Anyway, there's like 20 or 30 different forums. So, all day long I'm reading forums of people, and I'm getting emails, and I'm learning all these things. And it was interesting because I was learning all the different pieces, right? Some people would talk about SEO and that's what they geeked out on. So, I started reading all the SEO articles, and I started learning how to do SEO and backlinking. So, I was like, "Oh, this is how you make money." And then someone else was like, "SEO's stupid. This is how we make money," and they had a whole different strategy. And then someone else had a different strategy, and soon I was just looking at all these shiny objects and I was like, "I don't know which one I'm supposed to do."
How many of you guys ever felt that before? There's like 8,000 things. Like, "Russell said funnel. Someone else said this." Like, "Ah." And so, I was in that as well, and so I was just like... I got in this perpetual learning phase, right? Where I was learning and studying, and learning and studying. Then I started watching what was happening. Right? And I was on all these different email lists, but then it seemed like it was coordinated. Once every couple months, all of a sudden I would get an email from 30 or 40 people who somehow I had got on their email lists and all of them would be talking about the same product at the exact same time. Right? And all of a sudden you're like, "Oh, my gosh. Everyone's talking about this thing." Right?
And I think the first ones I saw there was an old e-book called Google Cash. And it's how people are making money on Google doing Google ads. It was Chris Carpenter's offer, and he had gotten a whole bunch of affiliates. I don't know how at the time, but he had a whole bunch of affiliates all promote at the same time, so my inbox... And I'm at college opening my inbox and there's like 40 emails from people all talking about this book. I'm like, "This is the thing everyone's talking about. It's got to be the secret." I was so excited. And I went and paid this $67 for an e-book, which no one knew what e-books were back then and we were all confused. Literally, I remember messaging the support team and I was... like two weeks later. I'm like, "When's the book going to show up?" And they're like, "It's digital." I'm like, "I don't know what that means." They're like, "It means you download it." And again, 20 years ago, that was like... that was weird. That wasn't a thing that nowadays we all get it. But back then...
And so I download this book, and I'm trying to read it, and I was just like, "I paid $67 for a PDF. My wife's going to kill me when she finds out." But I'm reading it and I'm getting all excited like t's next big thing, and all of a sudden, there's this next promotion and everybody's talking about this next thing. I'm getting all these... like 20, 30 emails. And I was like, "It's got to be this," so I jumped over there, and it's started me on this rabbit trail. And I just remember being confused, and overwhelmed, and all the things a lot of us go through. Right?
And about that time... This was probably the very first ever high-ticket... Not even high-ticket, like $1,00 product. There was this guy, and I didn't know who he was at the time, but again, all of a sudden the emails start flying in my inbox. Right? And they're all for this guy. They say this guy is the godfather of internet marketing and he's retiring. And because of that, he's giving away his entire empire, everything he's built. And he called it the farewell package. Like, "This is my farewell from the internet. I'm done. I'm out. I've made millions of dollars, now I'm leaving." And his name was Mark Joyner.
And I didn't know who Mark was at the time, but I started reading the emails and the stuff, and I was just like, "This is the greatest thing in the world." Right? So, I remember going to the sales page, reading through it ready to try to buy it for 20, or 30 bucks, or whatever, and the price went was $1,000. And I was like, "Oh, I do not have $1,000. I've never had $1,000." My wife was working, supporting at the time, and she was making, I believe $9.50 an hour. So, I mean, it would take her, man, over 100 hours. No, because you got taxes. Probably 200 hours of her working, so that's a lot of time to pay for this $1,000 course.
I remember looking at it and I was like, "Oh, I don't have any money. I'm a broke wrestler." I had just gotten married, therefore, now I'm living off my wife who's making $9.50 an hour as a receptionist where she was working at. And I was like, "There's no way I can do it." And so, I remember not being able to buy it, not being able to buy it, but I kept seeing the emails, and the promotions, and the urgency, and the scarcity, and it eventually got to the point where it was about to sell out. Probably five or six weeks into this whole thing and about to sell out. And they were closing down the cart.
And I remember the night before... This is... Again, for those of you who are newer before there were webinars, there were things called teleseminars where you would pick up the phone, and you would call, and you'd just listen to people talk. And so, I called this teleseminar, and on the teleseminar these guys are talking about the Mark Joyner Farewell Package. And it was just... It was going to be gone the next day and you had to get it. And I remember listening to it and being sick to my stomach and laying in bed that night, and I was like, "I have to do it. This is my thing," and being so stressed out. And finally, the next morning I was still laying in bed. My wife woke up and I was like, "Colette, I know I bought a lot of stupid things that I haven't done anything with any of it yet, but I think this is the one. I think this is the thing."
I remember asking her. I was like, "Can I buy it?" And she said something like... In fact, I talked about it. I wrote it in the Traffic Secrets book, this story, but she's like, "Well, do you think this is the one for you?" I was like, "I think this is the one." She's like, "Okay, then here's our credit card." And we only had like a $500 credit limit I had to call up my bank like, "Can you double our limit to 1,000?" This is how like green we were back then. And we did it, and I bought the course, and I remember I got the course and there was like 15 CDs, all these interviews. And so, I started listening to the CDs, and what was crazy, as Mark was talking, he kept talking over and over and over again, about two concepts.
The first one was the power of your own list. He kept talking about, "You have to have your own email list, and this is how it works, and if you have an email list of 10,000 people, you send an email out to your offer, you can sell a whole bunch of your things." And I started realize, I'm like, "Oh, my gosh. This is literally what's been happening to me. I'm on all these people's email lists. They have a big email list and send an email, and if I buy a $1,000 course, they must have made 500 bucks." And I started putting the pieces together. It's like, "Oh, my gosh. This is how it works." And some of you guys... I'm not going to tell the whole story, but some of you guys have heard my story. After listening to two or three of these CDs I was like, "I need an email list." And I went down that whole journey where I got called a spammer and... Anyway, so that's... Insert that story there. I'm not going to tell that story because it's outside the context of this event.
But I started trying to send email and it didn't work. And I was just like, "This thing Mark is teaching me, I need to have an email list, but everyone's got one, except for me. I don't have a list. It's not fair." And I kept listening to Mark's course, and as he got deeper and deeper in the course, he started talking about this thing called joint ventures. And he was like, "Every time you start a new company or launch a new product, the first thing we do before you buy ads or anything is we go and we have these different partners who all already have email lists."
He's like, "Go with people who already have email lists, and then some of them will promote and send traffic to my thing, and that's how you make money." And I was like... I was just seeing... You know there's those curtain in front of your face, and the curtain's lifted? I saw the Wizard of Oz. I'm like, "This is how it works. You have to have an email list. If you don't have an email list, you find other people with email lists, and they promote your offer, and then the people buy your product, and then you have an email list." And I was like... It all started making sense in my head. I was like, "Okay." And then I did what I'm sure all of you guys did, especially if you've read Traffic Secrets book... And I didn't know what this was called at the time. I didn't have words for it, but it was basically my first Dream 100.
I was like, "Okay. Who's got an email list?" Like, "Mark said people have email lists. We need to find people with email lists," and so that was kind of the next question. And so, I started making my first Dream 100 list. And it was funny because I had this farewell package I bought from Mark Joyner and he had all the people he interviewed. So I said, "Well, this is my Dream 100, all the people Mark interviewed." And so, I don't remember most of the names. I do remember Joe Vitale though. He was one of the names. And some of you guys know Joe Vitale. If you go to mrfire.com, he's written like 400 books. He's awesome. I wrote Joe Vitale down. I started writing other people's names down.
And so, I remember I'm building this Dream 100 list and I was like, "Okay, this is easy. I'm just going to email them all, and then they're going to promote my thing, and I'm going to be rich. This seems really awesome." Right? And I'm sure some of you guys have thought of that before. Hopefully, it's not just me. So, I start emailing Joe Vitale, and I can't remember all the other names. Joe's the one that stuck out in my head. I remember emailing them all and then just waiting like, "Okay, they're going to respond back to me, and then this is going to be this big thing, and I'm going to make a bunch of money." And I think I had my first or second product at the time, so it was like I had a product for them to sell and everything. Sent all the emails out and it was crickets. Not one person wrote back to me. And I was like, "Huh." I was like, "Okay, either this Mark Joyner's full of crap or I need to send another email."
So, being a relentless person, I send another email to all them like, "Hey, Joe Vitale. Did you not get my email? Because I've got this new product and if you promote it, we can split the money 50/50. It's going to be awesome." Right? Like he's for sure... Like, "I'll even give you 60% commission." Maybe I'll blow his mind. Right? So, I tell him this thing, crickets. Nobody responds back to me. And I remember just being like... I was like, "This internet thing doesn't work." So, I remember being frustrated and just not knowing what to do, not believing this JV thing actually worked. Assuming that it's impossible to build an email list and I was stuck in that rut for a while. Probably, I don't know how many, four or five months of this rut of just like, "It didn't work. I tried."
And have you guys done that where you try something somebody told you and then you're like, "Oh"? It reminds me of... Well, never mind. I'm not going to tell that story, but it reminds me of just so many of us do that where we're trying to follow a guru. We try the thing and it doesn't work, and we're like, "Oh, it didn't work." It's like, maybe we just didn't execute it quite correctly.
So, fast forward a little while later there was this internet marketing event. It was Armand Morin. It was called the Big Seminar back then. And it was the seminar in the industry. Kind of like Funnel Hacking Live is nowadays. It was the seminar. And so, I remember saving up some money and we flew out to... And I had made a little bit of money online at this point. Not a lot. I was making, I don't know, maybe 1,000 bucks a month or something. So, I had a little bit of money just so I didn't have to yell... borrow more money from Colette's credit card to go and go to this event.
So, I fly out to this event. It's in Atlanta. I go to the seminar and I remember thinking, "All the speakers on stage, I'm going to get all... That's going to be my next affiliates or my next people I'm going to be partners with." And so, we're seeing all the speakers and they seem bigger than life. They're on stage, and they're talking, and I was just like, "If any of these guys promoted my product, I'd be rich." That's the thing going through my head. Right? And so, I'm seeing them, writing all their names down. I'm like, "I'm going to become partners with them and become friends with them. I'm going to go meet them face-to-face. Maybe that's the secret. If I meet them face-to-face then it'll be easy."
Unfortunately, I'm insanely introverted, and shy, and scared. So, I'm at the event, I see the person walking by. I remember seeing Stephen Pierce. He was the guy at the time. He walked past and I was just like... He walked right past me, and he walked past, and I'm like, "Ah, I blew it. Stupid, Russell. Stupid, Russell. You didn't even talk to him." And I'm sitting there in the hallway and all of a sudden Armand... Actually, I was in the bathroom and Armand walked next to me in the urinal next to me. I'm like, "Armand's right here. What do I do? Do I say something? I can't say in the bathroom. It's so awkward." And he looks over and he is like, "Hey, man. How's it going?" I'm like, "Good." And he is like, "All right," and then walks away and walks out of the bathroom.
I'm like, "Ah, I blew it again. I blew it again." You know? And I'm too scared to talk to any of the speakers, but I'm like... For me, I'm like, "This is the key. This is the key to my freedom is these speakers," and I didn't dare do it. I wimped out every single person. I didn't talk to a single one of them. And then at nights, all the attendees would go to the bar. Now, I'm not a drinker. I've never drank in my life. Most people don't believe me, but I've literally never drank in my entire life. So, I'd go to these bars and I was like, "I don't want people to think I'm drinking," because like I have a thing like that where I want to avoid the appearance of evil at all costs. Right?
So, I remember I'd go to the bar and I was like, "Ah, how do I..." And literally, the bartender was like, "You want something to drink?" I was like, "Can you give me milk?" He was like, "Seriously?" I'm like, "I don't know. Can you?" I was like "Because if it's going to be a Sprite, people going to think it's some fizzy drink." I don't know. I don't even know what drinks are. Like, "It's going to be fizzy something." So, I'm like, "If you give me milk they're going to know that it's not alcohol." Right? So, he's like, "All right." So, the guy gives me a milk. I'm holding this milk at the bar walking around and everyone's like... All these people start coming to me, which is really cool, and they're like, "Are you drinking milk?" I was like, "Yeah." They're like, "Why are drinking milk?" I'm like, "Oh, well, I'm Mormon, so I don't drink." They all kind of laugh at me, but it opened dialogue when they came to me.
And this is... Okay, side note. Interesting for the introvert. Who are the introverts in the room? If you're introvert, I learned something really cool. Nicholas Bailey actually told me this. He dresses weird because he's introverted and he's too scared to go talk to people. He's like, "If I do something weird," he's like, "people come to me and like, 'Oh, nice shirt. Nice glasses. Nice,'" blah, blah, blah, blah. And so, that's what happens. I had this weird thing, and then people came to me. They're like, "Why are you drinking milk in a bar?" And then it started a conversation, and then when I'm in a conversation I can do it. It's the walking up to. Like, "How am I going to go and..." You know what I mean? So scary for me. And so, people started talking to me. We started becoming friends and get to know people, and I'm talking in this group, and it was interesting because everyone I was talking to, they all had businesses just like me, but they weren't the guy on stage with a list of 100,000 people and all this kind of stuff They were here and they had a list of like 500 people. Or I got a list of 1,200 people. They were all kind of at this level. About the same level I was at.
I was like, "Oh, my gosh," and we started talking, getting to know each other. And back then it was before Skype or before... It was pre-Skype. It was pre... What do we use nowadays? Slack or Instant Messenger. Whatever. We used to use Yahoo Messenger, or IRQ, or AOL, and so it always like, "What messenger are you on? Here's my AOL chat," or, "Here's my IRQ." Or ICQ Sorry. ICQ. Or, "Here's my..." And so, they give them to you, and so that was how we get to know people. So, I put it out, write it down, and then I remember the people.
I remember Mike Phillip's name was on Yahoo Messenger. His name was signanddrive.com. And I remember Brad Callen. I remember Brad Fallon. And so, I started meeting all these people at the bar while I'm drinking my milk, and getting to know them, and I'm writing down all their little handles. And then we get home and away from the event, and so I start putting those things in and I start messaging them. I feel way more comfortable talking through text, through Yahoo Messenger. I was like, "Hey, great meeting you at the event," blah, blah, blah. "This is a picture of me so you remember who I was." Right? And the person would write back, "Oh, yeah. It was really cool. You were the guy with the milk, right?" I'm like, "Yeah." And we'd start this dialogue. And then I was like, "Okay..." Not even thinking that these guys would be big partners someday, but I kind of started getting to know these people. And we were all kind of the same level. And this is the key. Okay? I'm trying to tell stories with hopefully principles you guys can pick from it.
So, all these people were at the same level. And I remember because at the same time I was messaging Joe, Vitale, and messaging all the speakers in the event, and none of them are responding to me. It's just like crickets. No one's responding back. I'm talking to these guys. And I remember I was creating an offer and these guys had become my friends. And I was like, "Hey, can you check this out? Do you think this is good? Is the offer good?" And they started messaging back, and all of a sudden they started becoming involved in my business, right? They had a vested interest because they were kind of like, "Oh, I would do this," or, "I'd try this over here. And all of a sudden they started sharing ideas back and forth and it was really cool.
And then they would share with me what they were doing back and forth, and it was really, really cool. And I had vested interest in their projects because I was like, "Oh, you should try this, or, "Oh, I did this. You should try this." We built this little group of people. And I don't even know. It was probably four, five, six people maybe that we kind of did this thing. And I remember because about this time is when my very first software product ever came out, and I don't talk much about this product.
It was a product called ZIP Brander, and I was so proud of it. And I remember I sent it to Mike Filsaime. I was like, "Hey, here's my first software. Check it out." He was like, "Dude, that's so cool. Do you want me to promote it to my list?" And I was like, "Wait, he just asked me." Like never it happened. I was just like, "I've been asking all these people at this level up here, all the people I'm looking up to, the gurus, the big famous people. No one, crickets, and all of a sudden my friend's, like, 'I'll promote it to my list.'" And I was like, "Dude, you serious?" He's like, "Yeah." I'm like, "Okay." And so I give him the link. He sends an email to his list, and I can't remember. I paid him like 50, 60, 70. I don't know. I was like, "You can have all the money. I just want... I need a list. I know the goal. The goal to get a list. I'll give you 100% commission." Right?
And so, he promoted and I think he sold... I don't know, he sold five or six copies of my thing, but then I got the money, and then I gave most of it to him. But then what happened is I got five or six customers, but a bunch of people... I had a pop-up on the site. A bunch of people filled out the pop-up, and I got like 300 or 400 people on my email list. And I was like, "This is awesome." And then I knew Mike had a product, and I was like, "Hey, man." I was like, "Dude, I love..." He had a product called Carbon Copy Marketing back then or something. It was a two-disc DVD set. And this is before DVD, so he literally would go and he would print a DVD and ship it out to you from his house. This is how... 20 years ago. Remember, this is before things like that.
And so, he said, "Yeah." So, I emailed my list of like 300 people from him the 400 or 500 people I built, so maybe a thousand from my list. I sent the email and I sold like five or six of his DVDs. And he is like, "Thanks, man." And we did our first little cross-promotion, and me and Mike became friends. And then Mike told me. Then Mike's like, "Dude, you know who you should do? I met this guy named Gary Ambrose. You should meet Gary because Gary has got a list too, and he promoted the same DVDs you just promoted and it was awesome. You should get to know him." So, he introduced me to Gary. Me and Gary met up, and I was like, "Oh." And Gary and I started sharing ideas, and then eventually he promoted my things, I promoted his, and then Gary's like, "Oh, dude, you should meet so and so." And I was like, "Oh, you should meet..." And all of a sudden we started this little four or five people start introducing more and more people, and soon I've got 20 or 30 friends all on Yahoo Messenger and AOL that we're talking back and forth and getting to know each other. Right?
And what's interesting is that we all kind of helped promoting each other. Our list went from 400 or 500 people to 1,000 to 1,500, to 1,000 to 2,500, and they kept growing and growing. And I was looking at this little group of people all working together. It was like a groundswell where our businesses all started gradually rising together. What do they say? A rising tide raises all ships, right? That's what started happening. And we started getting bigger and bigger. I'm like, "Oh, my gosh. This is so cool." And then we started doing more things and this is, man, a two or three-year period of time while I was in college, we were going back and doing these things. And it was just... It was really, really cool. Right?
And I remember one day Mike had this idea, Mike Filsaime had this idea for a product called Butterfly Marketing. Some of you guys may have heard of it, but it was the first time he had the idea. And he's like, "Hey, man, check out the sales letter." He had this huge sales letter. And on the sales letter, he had these testimonials from all the people. All the people you'd want, right? I was like, "How'd you get all those guys' testimonials?" He's like, "Oh, I didn't. I just put their pictures in just as the placeholders as a dream of someday I'm wanting to get these people's testimonials." I was like, "Oh, that'd be so cool to get to know them." And then he's like, "Well, I met so and so. I know so and so who does know that person," and all of a sudden this network started happening, right?
Anyway, Mike went and started messaging and eventually got to the person, one of the people, and they gave him a thing, and all of a sudden he got a bigger promotion from a bigger person. And what happened is, is we started doing this. Again, the people I looked up to were way up here and they wouldn't respond to me and things like that. And this group down here became friends. We all started growing together, and eventually what started happening is as we got bigger and bigger and bigger, we got closer to these people.
I remember probably, man, two years, maybe three years into this business I had an idea. And I was creating this whole project. It was a membership site. It was called The Lost Files, and it was based on old public domain books, which I could talk about for six years. But it's this geeky, nerdy thing that you can make money with. And so I got excited, I'm creating this thing, and I was like, "Joe Vitale, he's written like 500 books." I'm like, "Oh, Joe would be my dream person."
I know Joe had talked about public domain in the past. Joe had actually published a couple books from the public domain. And I was like, "He'd be my dream partner." But I was like, "He's ignored like 40 emails from me. There's no way he's going to respond to me now." Right? But I was like, "Oh, I got to do something." So, I remember I messaged him again this time and I was like, "Hey, Joe. Sorry to bug you. I have this new site." I explained what my site, thelostfiles.com. Like, "This is what is, how it works," and everything. And then the next day I get email back from Joe, and I was too scared to even open it. I'm like, "This is crazy."
And Joe messaged me back. He's like, "Hey, Russell, so good to meet you." He's like, "I've been seeing your name everywhere. All these different people keep promoting your stuff. They keep popping up in my inbox. The Lost Files sounds awesome." The way he made the connection, he didn't... I don't think he... He didn't connect that it was me who was annoying him for like 40 emails prior. He just didn't connect it. Or maybe he just ignored it, or he forgave me, or whatever, but he message back and said, "Yes." And I was like, "Joe Vitale said yes." And I was freaking out. And so he goes and he does this... We had this promotion where we had a teleseminar together. He promoted his list. And then at the teleseminar he promoted The Lost Files, and we signed up like 300 members off his list at like 40 bucks a month, which for a college kid, is insane.
And it was this one deal, and then Joe was like, "Oh, by the way, have you ever met so and so, and so and so?" and starts opening these doors again. Now, because I've gotten closer and closer, I got one person in and all of sudden it opened up this whole network of people. And that was my journey for the first three or four years. And so I wanted to kind of lead with that because again, I think so many of you guys are like me where you see the people.
I meet people all the time. "Russell, you say to build a Dream 100 list, I've got to dream one, and it's just you." And I'm like, "Not a good strategy." I literally said Dream 100 for a very important reason because it shouldn't be me. I do maybe one promotion a year and usually, it's for Tony Robbins. And so, for me to say yes, it's going to be like... We got to date for a decade before it's going to happen, so if you're banking on that it's going to be a long, long time for something to happen, right?
I was like, "Instead, go and do things with people at your own tier, your own level where they're looking for things, and looking for cross-promotions, and things will start happening. And then what happened is you start rising to the top, and all of a sudden people like me are going to start seeing you. You show up my news feed. I start seeing emails." All of a sudden it's like now there's this relationship, right?
It's funny. There's... This is a funny story. So, one of my buddies, I met him probably... It's probably been 12 years ago now. Some of you guys know him. He's Chad Wallner. He's a chiropractor. I talk about him in the Dot Com Secrets book. But he moved into our area, and so we go to church. We were going to the same church, and so he shows up and he sees me. And he was seeing me online. He knew I was and stuff. He came to me and he's like, "Russell." He's like, "Dude, this is so... I can't believe you're in my ward. I've seen you before," blah, blah, blah, all this stuff. And he's like, "We actually have a mutual friend together." And I was like, "We do?" He's like, "Yeah." So, he's trying to build a connection so we can connect and stuff. And it was interesting because he said, "We got this mutual friend." And then he told me the name. He's like, "Here's the guy's name." And I was like, "Don't know who he is."
He was like, "Oh, weird." He's like, "He talks about you all the time as if you guys were best friends." I was like, "I don't know who that is. I'm so sorry." And years later, Chad and I had this discussion about this and it was funny because he was like, "Man, I..." The realization is it's not who you know, it's who knows you. Right? I knew who Joe Vitale was. I knew who these people... I knew Tony Robbins. So, I wanted them, but it's not that I know them. I need them to know me. Right? So, it's how do you get them to know you?
Well, it's by doing cool stuff in the market that they're playing in. Showing up. Will they see you in news feeds, see you in emails, see you in stuff? Where all of a sudden they keep seeing these things and then they see you. They got to know who you are. Right? When you approach them like, "Hey, my name is so and so," if they don't know who you are, it's going to be really hard to build a relationship. If they're like, "Hey, this is so and so," it's easy.
For example, I was trying to do a negotiation with someone the other day. I wish I could tell you all the details. I can't though. Anyway, really big company. You'd be aware of who they are. And so, I tried to get a meeting with the founder of it, and we get on a Zoom call like this, and the very first thing he says, he's like, "Man, Russell," he's like, "I see you like 12 times a day. You are everywhere in my news feed. I get emails from you. You must be the best internet marketer on the planet."
And I was like, "This is going to be the easiest negotiation in my entire life because he knows exactly who I am." Right? As opposed to me coming to him and trying to explain who I was. Right? And so it's like, as you're doing stuff actively in the marketplace, people will start seeing that and become aware of you. Right? And that's how you start rising to the top.
I get people all the time that message me like, "Hey, can I speak at Funnel Hacking Live?" I'm like, "I don't know who you are." Like, "I'm the best speaker. Here's my speaker," blah, blah, blah. I'm like, "I don't know who you are." Right? But check this out. McCall Jones, who I think is on here, or she was on here earlier, right? McCall, she showed up on Funnel Hacking Live. Then she does this thing, and then she starts publishing, and she starts doing everything, and I start seeing her everywhere. I see her energy and her excitement. I see how she's developing things. She's like using things she learned from me, but developing her own things, which was really cool. Because I'm like, "Oh, my gosh. She's a good student and she's doing things." And this whole thing starts happening, and I see her in my feed. I see her all the time. And my friends start talking about her, and then Monica, who's on this as well. Monica messaged me.
There's McCall right there. Yeah. What's up?
And Monica messaged me, "You know McCall? You got to..." And so, her friends are calling me and telling me to listen and stuff. And soon, I'm watching everything she's doing. And I'm like, "Oh, my gosh, I'm impressed." I start podcasts. How many... Once or twice I talked about you on the podcast before we even met officially. I'm like, "This girl McCall keeps showing up. She's doing these cool things." And on Funnel Hacking Live, I'm like, "Who should speak on Funnel Hacking Live?" I'm like, "There's this girl who's never spoken on stage before. Right? She's never... Doesn't like, 'Here's my speaker reel. I've got a perfect presentation.'" But I'm seeing that. I was like, "She'd be like the perfect person to come on stage and, and speak." And so anyway... Hey, McCall. What's up?
Thank you. Wow, that's so nice. I'm just hyping you up, over here reacting to all of your stuff, so hey. Funnel Hacking Live. Woo hoo!
All right. But conceptually, you guys, it make sense. If you want to get into, they call it the good old boys club. Like, "How do I get in the good old boys club?" It's the way you get into it is you have to infiltrate it. And it starts finding people at your own level and start playing the game, start moving forward, start making noise, start doing stuff, and then people are going to start seeing you and start becoming aware of you.