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Andrew Miller, Author Of The Startup Growth Book, Shares His Best Book Marketing Secrets

Andrew is a prolific bootstrapped startup marketing expert who has driven three VC-backed startup exits, and dozens of successfully funded startups. In this episode, Andrew talks about his new book, The Startup Growth Book: 50+ Proven Ways to Scale Your Business Without a Marketing Budget, and how he’s applying the lessons from the book to market the book. You might pick up a few ideas about how to market your own book, and your business too.

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EPISODE TRANSCRIPT

Josh Steimle: Today, our guest is Andrew Lee Miller. Andrew is a prolific bootstrapped, startup marketing expert, multi entrepreneur and now author. A lot of stuff going on there. Andrew has done three VC-backed startups. He's been involved in advertising and growth hacking, NPR. He's written for Ink Magazine and Startup Grind, (which is near and dear to my heart), Startup Nation, and he is coming out with this book called The Startup Growth Book. 50 Plus proven ways to grow your business without a budget. And it's coming out right now. Or has it already come out, Andrew?

Andrew Lee Miller: It came out about a month ago, I need to update that bio, I guess.

Josh Steimle: Alright came out a month ago, so it's available now. Well, Andrew, welcome to the show!

Andrew Lee Miller: Thank you so much, Josh. Happy to be here.

Josh Steimle: Andrew is coming to us from Puerto Vallarta. He's lived all over the world; you've done business in like 70 countries or something. Is that right?

Andrew Lee Miller: I mean, "done business" is with quotation marks, but I've made money while traveling to those places.

Josh Steimle: Yeah, so Andrews got some digital nomad background too, which I'm sure we'll get into here. But give us a little bit of your story, Andrew. Where do you come from? What do you do? How did you get here?

Andrew Lee Miller: Whoooo! How much time do we have? No, I'm kidding. So, I started a startup in 2006. In college, I did video resumes for graduating college students. I fell in love with just the marketing and growth side of it. That business did well, but I didn't want to give all my 20s away to work. So, I kind of just ran away from it and just ran and said, "I'll come back if that's what my heart leads me to." All I could think about was working for other people on their marketing, and not having to deal with all the other parts.

So that led me to Puerto Vallarta, which I haven't been here the whole 15 years, I just came back because of COVID. But it's an incredible place where you can truly settle down but stay connected because it's so close to America. Then I moved to Dubai for five years and worked with some founders there and drove a $250 million startup exit, then an $11 million startup exit. Then I moved to San Francisco and drove a $5 million startup exit. And then I was like, Okay, I'm done making other people millions of dollars unless they're really properly paying me.

So that's when I started a consultancy, which led me to work with lots of really cool projects. But at the same time, as you become more and more successful, Josh, you know, you have a marketing agency as well, you start to say no more and more often to inbound opportunities. And I'm really passionate about people who can't afford to hire me. So how do you help all those people? I started with online courses and public speaking and doing a coaching program and all those things still have a pretty high-ticket price. Well, finally, because of COVID, thank you COVID, I had time to sit down and be in the house and stop traveling and stop doing all these speaking tours and things. And I wrote a book, which encompasses everything I've ever learned in 15 years, on how to grow hack individual channels.

So, lots of marketing books teach you theory, you know how to think like a growth person, you know, how to strategize the growth of your business, but this is actual actionable, actual things that you can do like how to do your own SEO, how to do your influencer marketing, how to do app store optimization, email marketing, content, online giveaways, etc, etc, to grow your business. So, I'm just passionate about helping bootstrapped entrepreneurs grow their business, and the book is a combination of all of that.

Josh Steimle: Which is perfect, because not only are we talking to entrepreneurs on this podcast about their book journey, and we want to hear about your whole book journey, but you've got tips in this book that these entrepreneurs can use to market their book and get their book out there. But let's start with that book journey. You said you started writing it during COVID? What was the process like? You're a writer, you've written for other places, was this piece of cake for you? Or was it totally different writing a book versus writing articles and blog posts and stuff?

Andrew Lee Miller: I think I had an easier time than most people because this information had been locked up there. And it wasn't so much of a story. Like I knew the format I wanted to tell- these are the chapters, these are the channels that are really going to help entrepreneurs at that bootstrap level. So, the outline had been there. And I think I'd started it years in the past, but actually to growth hack, I transcribed all my online courses, which is one way to do it. But if you don't have online courses, someone taught me a long time ago, just dump in every single resource, quote, previous thing you worked on. That is the easiest way to get started.

So, step one is just dumping everything we possibly can into your document and then editing and cleaning up. Then you start to get a flow and then you're just breaking down blocks times on your calendar. And so, for me that wasn't actually very difficult. I think it was more time consuming than I had expected in the beginning. But again, like I said, with COVID, I had 12-hour breaks on 24 hours on the weekend to write because we weren't leaving the house. I actually wrote for two weeks while having COVID. I literally had COVID.

You're laughing, but I didn't have any symptoms. I only knew I had COVID because there was incense burning in the house. And I was like, I can't smell it. Oh, my God, I've got COVID. Then we locked down in the house. And then I literally just burnt a butt cheek impression in the chair from sitting there for so long. But I think step one is really starting with that outline that really helped me and then I, you know, ship that outline around to startup founders, clients, customers, partners, you know, friends and family and like, is this going? Are these channels going to be helpful? Is there anything else that you think I should put into the book? Then getting that feedback, that was the framework I worked from.

Andrew Lee Miller: But I started by one, transcribing my audio books, but also like, what is the research and the data that I want from my career, so pulling it out my own data. Then from other things outside of my own wheelhouse that I need, and then dumping those things in and obviously attributing that to the right sources throughout the book as well. But the no risk of plagiarism or anything, but that's what really helps me get the thing moving.

Josh Steimle: Cool. I pulled at least three important lessons out of what you just said there. One was, you said that you've really been working on this for years, even before you knew that you were working on a book, you were working on a book. Now, did you have an idea years ago that someday you wanted to write a book? Or was this totally like a surprise? Hey, COVID is here, "Maybe I should write a book." Did you have that idea in the back of your mind before though?

Andrew Lee Miller: I've been living a pretty crazy digital nomad lifestyle for 15 years. I left the US in 2017. And like you mentioned, been in 70 countries working remotely. And I've been told I need to write a book forever, like literally since the beginning. And I had this title called "Just Go" and it's about Americans creating a gap year culture in America. You know, you've lived abroad. I don't have any friends who've lived our lifestyle. And so many Americans aspire to it, I think now in droves. So, I've been thinking of writing a book for a long time. But I hadn't focused on the marketing aspect and hadn't created an entrepreneurial or a b2b book.

So, the idea to write a book was there. And like you said, I've been writing for other publications, and, you know, giving my content away to other areas. But I never thought I could sit down and write something until it was something that I knew I already had. This book didn't take six months to research. I have a colleague who wrote a book that has 800 interviews in it and took him three years. And I didn't have that. So, this was a good starter for me, let's get this book out of the way, give everybody $20 access to my entire 15 years of experience. And then I'll write the more difficult books after that

Josh Steimle:  So, with the outlining process, how did you decide that you wanted the outline to be what it was? Was that just something that kind of formed on its own? And it was natural?

Andrew Lee Miller: Yeah, so the book has ten chapters, eight actual channels that I go into teaching how to hack with no spend, by the way. So, people might try and charge you $10,000 a month for SEO. If you buy this $20 book, you literally know how to do SEO yourself for free. And that, like the framework kind of came from the research I did when I was developing all these online courses. So, the courses were developed over the course of three years, and interviewing a lot of clients, startup founders. I did public speaking and seeing the qualitative data around the questions that people ask, these are the channels that people need to learn about.

So I knew from the online coursework, that these were the channels I wanted to focus on, I was able to go much more in depth with the book than a 10 or 20 minute online course video. So I think the the outline was in the framework was already in my head and you know it's like, the chapter one is kind of an intro and a little bit of a high level overview of what it is to think like a growth hacker or why you should want to growth hack all these channels and the reason why startups fail and the data behind startup failure.

By the way, for anybody listening to this, I can't remember the exact quotes, but the highest majority fail because they give up before they find product market fit. And the second thing is they don't prioritize marketing early enough. So, in my book, we really talk about those two things and how to alleviate those two problems, which combine to make, like, some two thirds of all startup failures. So, knowing that was why I was doing it. I want to stop startups from failing at the early stages, that was kind of easy for me to reverse engineer, these are the things they need to do to not fail.

Josh Steimle: And I love that you crowdsourced help with your book, you didn't just say, "Hey, I'm going to write a book, I'm going to put it out there. And then it's out there". You went, and you spread this around, you tested out this content? I mean, first, you're testing out the content, because you're writing all these articles for all these years. So you already knew what content resonated and what lessons you wanted to share. But then you said you wrote the book, and then you shared that with a bunch of people, right?

Andrew Lee Miller: Mm hmm. Yeah, the early stages, you know, you give it to clients, you give it to startup founders, you look up to- I actually sent a copy to the guy who created the term growth hacking, you know, very famous growth hacker, and got excellent feedback from him. And I was like, oh, he is, you know, he has no reason to give me good feedback. I'm technically a competitor. So, if he thinks it's great, then it must be I must be on to something.

And so yeah, I think you have to get other eyes on it. Obviously send it to an editor, they edit it. I had her specifically not focus on things like typos and stuff. Like I don't care. I mean, obviously it's important for readability. But it's just so chock full of value. I mean, there's like 1000s, and 1000s of dollars’ worth of free tools that I recommend alone in the book, not only how to save money from not paying a PR agency, whatever.

So, I was really, my editing and focus on shipping and round was like, How can I maximize the value for people that can't afford to pay for any other sort of marketing? So we've got books being bought in Brazil, in Nigeria, and Lebanon, and places where the currency is, South Africa, where the currency really is not super strong. And that's what's passionate for me. So I was excited to get feedback from around the whole world.

Josh Steimle: That's cool. So, in terms of leveraging this book now, I mean, you said you want to help entrepreneurs. So, part of why you're putting this book out there, which I get, is you get a lot of people coming to you and saying, "Hey, help me out with this, help me out with that", and you want to help everybody. But there just isn't time to help all the people that are out there.

So it's natural to say, "Hey, I can write a book. And then I can just give people this thing, and it's 20 bucks, anybody can afford that. And then they can get the help that they need." Right? It's also a tool, that's a funnel, to drive the right people to you who actually are going to pay the fees. Right? So how are you leveraging the book to get your ideal audience to do business with you?

Andrew Lee Miller: Yeah, I think that's supposed to be the goal. And I think that's what the goal of subsequent books I'm gonna write are going to be. But really for this, it really was not focused on driving. Because, I mean, obviously, I hope that they take these lessons they scan. Like the dream scenario would be, you're starting out, you have no money to spend on marketing, you buy this book, you slowly but surely grow your business. And then you start to raise money. And then you go, you know what, that guy that taught me everything? "Hey, Andrew, now we're funded. What can we do together?" Oh, hello, avid reader. I've got a startup marketing agency that works with recently funded startups, or a coaching program. And so that is the goal, I suppose.

But really, like, for me, it was like, I want something that's going to help everyone. And you know, like, the majority of startups do fail, and they don't fail for just marketing reasons. There are products that they were focused on the wrong things, they didn't have their heart in it. They weren't creating a product to solve their own problems. There are so many reasons.

So, you know, I hope that does happen. But really, I think that there is no such thing as failure in startups, you're learning so much. So my goal is to just help people learn as fast as possible from the book. But yeah, you're right. Essentially, in a perfect world, they read the book, they put these things into action. You know, I try to tell people as they're reading to do one chapter per week, they're not really listening very well. You know, like, they want to read the whole thing. People message me almost every day, "I read it all in one sitting, what else can you teach me?" Like, go back and actually execute some of these things. I have a workbook that goes along with the premium purchase of the book that's got new templates from my career homework, and so it slows the reader down a little bit.

But yeah, like the goal is that they put these things into action, and then their startup grows. Then naturally as their startup grows, so do the ways that I can help their company. So you know, it's been early days, a lot of people have reached out they bought the courses, you know smaller things that go along with the book, the workbooks. That's been amazing. I also have a, an online entrepreneur community on Facebook, for people who buy the book, I've got a set of resources and discounts from all the tools that are mentioned. So they get in contact to get access to those things. And so it's starting off to build a community around these things. I've also really been excited, Josh, a lot of organizations have gotten in touch where they want me to come and speak about the book. They buy bulk copies of the book. So that's been a big opportunity to help people but also a revenue generator.

My normal speaking fees are even virtually $2,500 and $5,000 for in person. Well, now I'm like, I'm waiving those speaking fees, and you just buy copies of the books for everybody there. And you know, I want those founders to get the book in general, then hope that some of their businesses then come back. Delayed gratification, the number one best friend of any entrepreneur, you know, so I'm seeing a lot of that so far.

Josh Steimle: Cool. So with the book, it sounded before we started recording, it sounded like you're working with a publisher. Is that right? Or did you self-publish?

Andrew Lee Miller: No, I did not want to self-publish. I feel like, you know, I did a lot of investigation in the beginning, like, as I was writing it. Speaking to self-publishing agencies, self-publishing agents, book designers there, it's a really messy world, I'll be honest. It's a steep learning curve, I did about 15 or 20 calls. And I picked a small boutique publisher that has higher payouts for the author, but they really, it is almost like half self-publishing. I'm still doing all the marketing, the promotions, the growth, and the distribution of the book. But they work with Ingram. They get like a global distribution and help if I have, you know, organizations that need access to books in Vietnam and different countries. And they all like the cover design, you know, I just didn't know anything about. And I knew that, you know, maybe I get a little bit less profit out of this book, but I'll learn a lot from working with this company.

So it was absolutely worth the money the first time. And then I actually luckily enough, I did a partial, I did a barter with the agency. So they've become a client, and I've been helping them with marketing. So you know, as a marketer, you know, I'm able to help a lot of other business owners. And that's one of the most fun things about being an entrepreneur, I'm sure you did the same, you know, we're able to kind of trade a lot of our services. And so that happened for me with the book, but anybody that's out there thinking about self-publishing, if you don't have a huge following, like if you if you have like, you know, 200 or 500,000, social media followers, or a huge email list, I think maybe self-publishing would work for you. But it's still such a huge learning curve. Like I think that if you want to focus on what you do best, which for me was writing and consulting and coaching startups, and you want someone else to kind of train you and level you up. And I think it was absolutely worth it.

Josh Steimle: Cool. Yeah, I love to get the different perspectives on this, because there are people who swear by self-publishing, and there are people who swear by their publishers, and there are people who love both sides of it. And it's always interesting to hear why somebody went with publishing, why somebody went with self-publishing. So I love those insights.

So now that the books been out for a month, what have you been doing to get the book into the hands of the right people? What have you been doing in terms of marketing and applying your own stuff to getting your book?

Andrew Lee Miller: Yeah, wouldn't it be funny if I didn't have any sales and I'm trying to teach marketing books. So for me, we did a pre-launch campaign. Originally, the first very first thing I did was like a Kickstarter type campaign. A pre-funding campaign. So I sold 500 copies before I ever wrote the book. And that paid me enough to spend the time and actually write it instead of working on client stuff for that month.

Josh Steimle: Did you actually do that through Kickstarter, or where did you do that?

Andrew Lee Miller: No, I did it through a website called Publishizer.

Josh Steimle: Okay. I worked with them too on my book that I just released last week.

Andrew Lee Miller: Nice! So yeah, I'm a firm believer in a thing called price pacts. So, a price pact is when you like, almost associate, or punish yourself, or you lose money if you don't do something. And I mean, the easy example is like someone tacks $100 Bill every day on the calendar, and any day they miss a day in the gym, they have to go and like give that $100 to someone on the street. And so you know, like, that's a great thing, but you're losing $100 And that's what keeps them going to the gym every day so they can keep that $100 .

It was kind of the same for me with working with Publishizer. Like I kept saying I was gonna write a book, but as soon as I actually did it out to the public and knew that there was money involved, I got that done. And so that was a great experience. And so that was step number one. And then after the success of that campaign, I had access to their publishers that they recommended. And that really leveled me up from having to figure out the whole publishing versus self-publishing thing on my own.

So, then I picked a publisher, lifestyles entrepreneur press, Jesse Krieger, a good friend of mine now over there, and happy to make any referrals for anybody that's interested in chatting with him. So, we did another pre order campaign once the book was done and getting ready. And so, the first thing we did was we tacked on like bulk deals like for getting me to speak or getting my coaching for your startup for a couple months for buying 250 or 500 copies of the book. And that drove, you know, significant sales. But as far as marketing that I did to drive individual sales, I focus a lot on my public speaking. And I think the book has really been a the big goal of that is to increase my public speaking. I love to speak, you know, one hour of my time, and help all the startup founders in the audience just even reframe their brain about creating value and rather than taking value, and that's like one of the biggest reasons why startups win versus fail is when you reframe all your offers. And not even just startups, I mean, not to go into but like online dating or dating in general, everything relationships, it's all about how much value you give out rather than take. So, I love the public speaking aspects.

So, one thing I did was I had an intern for the first three months of two pre months. And then the month after the launch, he just finished up. And he was focused on PR. So getting me writing opportunities, podcast interviews, including this podcast, speaking opportunities, partnership opportunities with blogs, and organizations to do content writing. And then beyond that, we've done a little bit of content marketing and creating content on social media posting in different groups and things, but we've only really scraped the tip of the iceberg. I personally didn't want to have a huge, huge launch because it's my first book, I really want to the main focus of my business to still be on my high ticket marketing consultancy.

So I work with funded startups when they raise their first couple million dollars. And I didn't want anything to take precedence over that. So I've been really happy with like the growth so far. And now we're really like, at a stable place couple hundred sales a month is really okay for us right now. Because I also want to see what kind of wave comes inbound. My business wouldn't be able to sustain nor my coaching public speaking. I'm not trying to leave Mexico on a weekly basis to do public speaking in person. So, we're keeping things kind of slow through COVID, see how it goes. But we've got some good partnerships in place with like, local startup organizations in Ohio, Louisiana, California, where I'm doing a talk coupled with book purchases. That's been the main growth channel. But the individual sales have been constant and fun, and exciting. And I'm excited to scale that up, going further.

Josh Steimle: Cool. What are some of the other low hanging fruits in terms of marketing that you would recommend for other author entrepreneurs once they get their book out there? Or maybe what should they be doing right now before they even have a book, so that when the book launches, they're set up for success?

Andrew Lee Miller: Well, I think that marketing a book, for me, it's been since day one, having a client. A lot of people don't realize, like when they're doing a Kickstarter or something like that. It is a very hard marketing slog, and you really need to be committed to the marketing. So consider the time you're writing the book, like proper product development, and make sure that you're spending equal amounts of time marketing it. Because the worst thing that can happen is you spend all this time creating it, you put it out, especially for self publishing, it just crickets and just sit there.

I teach marketing all day. But that doesn't mean that I actually have the same strategies and execute them, which I know sounds crazy, but you still have to have time to do these things. And time management is really important. So you step one, block off time on your calendar for things when people come to my seminars, and they see me speak like this stuff is amazing. What do I do first, and I tell them, the first thing you do is put one hour on your calendar every day and give a task one task on that one hour, if you do that, and you've got 20 working days, or whatever it is, if you're like me, maybe 25 working days in a year, a month, year, and you know, so that's 25 hours a month you put into something, you're gonna start seeing results. And if you have the ability to track what's working and the analytics and the ability to get optics and ask people where they're buying the book, where they came from, whatever and you're even if it's in your Amazon dashboard, you can start to level up and see what's working and what isn't, but some things you shouldn't be I don't think you should be paid big paying money and paid user acquisition and paid advertising. I'm doing a little bit because I want to do retargeting to people who come to my website. And if they buy the book, you know that that's great. But I also think they might buy some of my other things.

So I'm happy to spend a little bit of money promoting the book. But there are ways that you can run paid ads that aren't crazy. If you're self-publishing, you can be running ads on Amazon. I have ads on Amazon through my publisher, you can do a lot with ads on Amazon to drive sales. Within my first week, I got it to cash flow even, like ROI, even. So for every dollar we're spending, we're driving a dollar in revenue for book sales already. So with that, like, theoretically, you can scale that up all the way. But you know, we're keeping it pretty for my reasons. I'm not scaling it up to thousands and thousands of readers yet. But so I think that's the only place I would ever spend any money.

But some other low-hanging fruit or you know, like everything is about building a community nowadays. So, there's two ways to really growth hack. In general, one is hacking your own product. So, what is your life cycle, people in your emails and your social media, your where can you hack opportunities to market your book to those people? The second thing is hacking existing communities. So where are the existing communities for your book for me, it's their startup meetup groups, their startup communities on Reddit, their startup questions being asked on Quora. There are other startup organizations around the country, there are startup blogs, there's startup podcasts, there's so much so I'm working on hacking into all those by creating value. I'll come and speak for free; I'll write an article for you for free. I will, you know, do a giveaway.

So, I just partnered with startups, Canada, a huge, 400,000-person organization in Canada, where I'm going to do a huge giveaway competition for my books, my courses, my coaching program, and they're going to send an email to 400,000 potential readers. I hope they don't all buy the book yet. But you know, those are the kinds of things that I think don't take anything but blood, sweat, and tears, you can find a virtual assistant in where Josh used to live. They will, not Boston, in Asia, they will, you know, you write the template message for them, you give them the target, they'll go out and find those people for you. I think that has the highest ROI start.

Josh Steimle: Interesting. Got any good Amazon ads tips? Because I'm trying to do this right now. Like I've never done Amazon ads before for myself. And I thought, you know what, I'm gonna use my book. I'm gonna experiment with this and learn some stuff about it. So, I'm going through that process right now, what were some of the lessons you learned? How do you get that ROI?

Andrew Lee Miller: Secret number one is to have 12 years of search experience. So, they copied off Google AdWords, because Google AdWords is the, you know, the best search sponsored search tool in the world. And so, it looks very similar to Google AdWords, which I've been certified in since I had hair. And so, it was very easy for me to figure out how to use the tool. But the first thing is using exact search terms. So, Amazon's job is to get you to spend as much as possible. Your job is to spend as least as possible with the right things that are going to drive sales for you. So if you just type in the keywords, even one word, two-word terms, three words, you might be okay. But one or two word terms like wellness, or marketing or growth hacking or being a published author to where you're going to be wasting a lot of money with people that don't actually want your book.

So the first thing is to only do the exact term. So mine is startup growth hacking book growth hacking book startup marketing book, like really serious, exact terms that can't be misconstrued. For instance, if I just did a growth book, anyone that searches personal growth book, or relationship growth book, or middle school growth book, I don't know like any any of that can come up. So you know, like, I'll never forget, 10 years ago, I had a client that was like, we're wasting like $10,000 a month on Google search. We can't figure out why. And the first day, they were an auto, they were like Craigslist, and they had the word Cherokee. And they were just paying like $3 a click for the word Cherokee instead of like the car, but anyone any high schooler researching the Cherokee Indian School project is going to be like, paying by accident clicking on that. So it was. So really focusing on those exact terms is really the first thing.

The second thing is, you know, just testing a lot of different ad creatives. So obviously, it's just a text ad. I have two ads running off the top of my head. I have, like the Kindle exit reader, I don't know, I forget what it's called. But it's like the full screen takeover when you first open your Kindle. That's not working as well, because that's not someone who's searching for it. So I think you might not even want to try that ad. And instead, you want to focus on search because it's it's your top of mind right? So, if I mean, you're not top of mind, the intent is so high. If someone's searching for what you have to offer it is exactly that it's going to convert.

So, focusing on that, but then maybe making like three different ad creatives, text ads, let it run for a week, come back, see which one works with a very different ad, a call to action or value prop. So, you know, one of my ads is to learn 50 ways to grow your business without spending any money. The other one is startup founders, entrepreneurs, small business owners, like calling the people and not mentioning the value prop, like you know, learn how to grow your business for free.

And then, you know, I don't remember what the third one is off the top my head, but eventually I'll be able to figure out, okay, nobody's responding to what I talked about three different types of people, they're all listening to the 53 way. So, let's make three different ads like that. And, you know, those are my best tips for Amazon. But it's not as detailed as Google search. So, it should be pretty easy for people.

Josh Steimle: Got it. Cool. Awesome. I already learned some things there that I'm going to implement.

Andrew Lee Miller: Great!

Josh Steimle:  So, we're really making good time here. You're packing a lot of value in really quickly.

Andrew Lee Miller: It's my job!

Josh Steimle:  So, one question I have is, in your book, are you doing specific things to steer people from the book to taking an action? Do you have a CTA call to action within the book? Whether it's downloading something, or subscribing to a newsletter or something so that you can continue building that relationship with people?

Andrew Lee Miller: It's a good question. Yeah, I mean, again, thank God, I didn't self-publish, I would have never known those things. So, the publisher coach, me, the editor really coached me a lot on not only like, for my own good, but for the reader, like, because there's a risk that they read these things, and then they stop thinking about it, and they don't put it into action. So by staying connected with me, by joining this group forum that we have on Facebook, by using the workbook, they make sure that the lessons get absorbed and that the things actually happen, which is my end goal.

So yeah, throughout the book, at the end of every chapter, we tell people to go on the forum, or to use the workbook to do the homework. And so if they don't have that, then they contact me, there's a, you know, in the back of the book, it says, like the URL for all the resources as well. So one thing is, they either contact me to get the extra freebies that go along with the book, or they were to purchase, like the courses and the workbook and stuff, which is great, then we get their email address. The second thing is, they sign up to get the resources on the resources page.

So I basically reached out to all the tools that I mentioned in the book, and several dozen of them gave me discounts, and offers unique to this audience. So that's really amazing. So I get the capture their audit data that way. And then the third is at the end of the book, I tell people, you know, if you've liked these lessons, and you know, you're like most of the people I work with, there's very few subsets of people that can do all this stuff and actually execute it all. So explain that to them.

You know, like, if you're bootstrapped, I'd love to you to book a call. And then from a call, like a paid consultation call, we will go through your business, your website, your product, and I'll give you marketing feedback on your strategy. And then from there, we can do things. And if you have more money, you know, this is my agency. So I kind of give them like three or four different options for continuing at the end of the book. And I think that's really been the very most receptive time for people after they finish.

Josh Steimle: Now, are you doing all this stuff yourself? Because I'm listening to you talk. And I'm like, "Man, it makes me tired just listening to you. Like, there's so much stuff that can be done." And I'm sure some entrepreneurs are feeling overwhelmed listening to this. They're like, Oh, man, there's so much to do. Just with the marketing side of the book. Do you have other people who are helping you out? Are you doing it yourself? Or is it not as bad as it sounds?

Andrew Lee Miller: No, I think that there's a lot of things on my to-do list, but I focus on making sure that they don't stay longer than a month. So, on one side, I have a full-time personal assistant executive assistant, she works with just me and my partner. We each have a business; she has her own business. So, she works full time with just us. She's also started as a marketing intern of mine. So, she also does some marketing stuff. I have a coaching program that uses college-educated interns, so I naturally usually have at least one intern working on the book or my stuff as well.

So, and then we have a project manager slash, like, do general manager as well. So I have a little bit of help. I mean, a lot, I guess more than most people, but I do. That's my struggle. I still do everything myself. I even pay these people and their job is to force me to give them things. So, I think if you're an entrepreneur, you're listening to this. I've realized after five years, even really 20 years of being an entrepreneur, but five years of really saying, I'm an entrepreneur, only since COVID really hit hard, I really have been actively outwardly focused on leveling up and going to that next level. And the hardest thing that break through the ceiling is starting to delegate and let go of things. And it's hard, it's really hard. And I think one thing is just knowing that nobody's ever going to do it as well as you do it. And I've slowly but surely gotten okay with that. And if, you know, if you allow that to happen, it's going to be good enough, they're going to get to good enough to where you can focus on doing more things. So, I still do most stuff myself.

Luckily, I don't really have much of social life, because COVID has kind of shut a lot of that down. And I mean, Mexico, I live on the beach, I go downstairs, and I'm on the beach. So, I have a very easy work-life balance here in Mexico. I'm working a tremendous amount. But I've promised my partner we're going to work until December 31, or December 30. And then we're taking all of January off. So, I think like give yourself time to sprint and let yourself know that it's okay to work really hard.

The book ended up taking me a year. So, I worked really hard, but it was COVID. So, like I worked really, really hard from conception to writing to release and to post-release, it's a year of really hard work. But you can do that in phases. Then when the book was released. Last month, I took some time off like, Alright, I'm not going to hit it super, super hard. And now I'm like ramping back up again. So, if it's not like a daily work life balance, it's in phases like a week or a month, I'm going to really sprint and put these 12 hour days and even on the weekends. So, I don't have short answers. In case you haven't noticed already. But long story long there is I still do too much myself. And I need to get better at delegating, but it's a daily advancement on that field front.

Josh Steimle: Well, what you said was really key is that you'll always do it better yourself. And this is the trap, right? Because every time I've ever hired somebody, I'm like, Man, I could do this myself, and I could do it better. And I could probably do it faster. The problem is I can't do 10 different jobs faster than 10 other people doing it. And so yeah, you have to at some point, say somebody else has to do this. Now, I've heard a lot of people who are much better. I mean, there's people I've hired who can do things I can't do at all. But there's a lot of just day to day stuff that needs to be done. And as the entrepreneur, as the expert who has 20 years of experience, of course, you can do that better than anybody else.

Andrew Lee Miller: Right.

Josh Steimle:  But should you be doing that? Because there's other stuff that only you can do. And there's stuff that somebody else can do, even if they can't do it as well. It's still worth it to outsource. That's a tough lesson to learn.

Andrew Lee Miller: It is. But I mean, it's amazing. And I think step one for me is getting that personal assistant and writing out my to do list and having her block my time. Her saying “You shouldn't be doing that, that's not on your to do list, you should find someone to do that.” And then using Upwork and Fiverr. It's more of the book promotion things that I mentioned, like building lists and sending emails to these people. And that can be very, very easily outsourced, even to anybody, once you build the framework for it. And it's just like applying that to PR to the writing opportunities to the speaking opportunities. It's all the same stuff. It's pitching via LinkedIn and via email. So that's the majority of the work that we do that I'm starting to delegate.

And then the things that I have trouble with are mostly for the marketing agency stuff, like I still want to work with every client, even if they don't have the budget to work with me and you can't grow a business that way. Like it's got to be pay to play. And so that's been a struggle.

Josh Steimle: Yeah, yeah. The eternal struggle. Andrew, this has been great to chat with you about your book journey, your experience and the tactics and strategies that you're using. If people want to connect with you and learn more about you, where's the best place for them to go?

Andrew Lee Miller: Thanks so much, Josh. So, the best place to find me is online. I'm @andrewstartups.com on Instagram. My email is [email protected], Twitter, whatever your poison, pick it and you can find me at Andrew Startups. The book is called The Startup Growth Book at startupgrowthbook.com. You can go to Amazon, Barnes and Noble anywhere and find that and yeah, we'd love to hear from anybody that like this. You can reach out to me, tweet to me, do whatever we can get in touch on social media first.

Josh Steimle: Perfect. Andrew, thanks so much for being with us here on the show today.

Andrew Lee Miller 

Thank you, Josh, for having me. Appreciate it.

 

 

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