The Fastest And Least Expensive Way To Double Your Sales

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Marketing Podcast with Amanda Holmes

In this episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast, I interview Amanda Holmes. Amanda is the CEO of Chet Holmes International (CHI) which has worked with over 250,000 businesses worldwide. At age 24, she inherited her father’s multi-million dollar enterprise, which specializes in helping companies double their sales. She’s the author of a book — Based on The Ultimate Sales Machine: Turbocharge Your Business with Relentless Focus on 12 Key Strategies.

Key Takeaway:

At just 24, Amanda Holmes inherited her father’s multi-million dollar enterprise – Chet Holmes International. Without much direction, she had to navigate the uncharted waters of running an enterprise at that scale. In this episode, Amanda shares more about her journey as CEO and the challenges of implementing change in a long-standing organization. Amanda dives into the process her father developed years ago that has helped large companies quickly double their sales and how she has helped that process evolve over the years.

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Questions I ask Amanda Holmes:

  • [2:49] What was it like being thrust into an ongoing organization as a family member?
  • [6:04] What was hard for you to change?
  • [7:58] What’s been the most fun for you when it comes to stepping into the CEO role of Chet Holmes International?
  • [9:26] Would you say that your music and arts background has brought a level of creativity that maybe didn’t exist in the org before?
  • [11:50] Who is your typical client at CHI?
  • [13:17] A core concept of your coaching is Dream 100 – can you describe what this is?
  • [17:48] One of the challenges you alluded to – we’re so focused on digital right now, you particularly have yourselves firmly in what you’re calling old-school processes – would you say that the old-school processes are working better than ever?
  • [19:59] Where can people find out more about you and your work?

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John Jantsch (00:00): This episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast is brought to you by Content Is Profit hosted by Louis and Fonzi Kame, brought to you by the HubSpot Podcast Network. Discover the secrets and strategies of how your business can achieve the frictionless sale. They talk about frameworks, strategies, tactics, and bring special guests to bring you all the information you need in order to turn your content into profit. Recent episode, The power of just one big marketing idea and How to get it really brings home this idea that instead of chasing the idea of the week, really lock in on one big idea to differentiate your business that can make all the difference in the world. Listen to Content Is Profit wherever you get your podcasts.

(00:54): Hello and welcome to another episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast. This is John Jantsch. My guest today is Amanda Holmes. She is the CEO of Chat Holmes International, which has worked with over 250,000 businesses worldwide. At age 24, she inherited her father's multimillion dollar enterprise, which specializes in helping companies double their sales. A lot of their works based on the best selling book, The Ultimate Sales Machine, of which they have a new edition coming out. Amanda's name will be all over the new edition as well. And she has merged her father's proven process with her own forward thinking ideas to connect the old school sales process with hybrid, online and offline instant gratification and short attention span that we see in consumers today. So Amanda, welcome back to the show.

Amanda Holmes (01:45): Thank you so much, John. You know, it means so much to me that you interviewed my father and then you interviewed me so many years ago and here we are again. It just, it means a lot. I, not a lot of people interviewed my father either, so

John Jantsch (01:58): I I was gonna say, I might be one of the few podcasters who has interviewed you both .

Amanda Holmes (02:03): Yes. Just I have never heard it from anybody else and I've done hundreds of interviews, so you are the only one

John Jantsch (02:10): . That's funny that, that was about 29, 20 0 9, 20 10, something like that maybe. And podcasting was in its infancy at the time, but somehow I've stuck with it

Amanda Holmes (02:21): .

John Jantsch (02:22): So we also have another shared connection. My daughter has actually worked for me for about 12 years. She is our chief operating officer. So I really kind of have to go there. Didn't work in the business as a family member. Right. You really brought, came into the business. I would have to think in some ways that was a pretty tall order because in fact I think you were studying music in college and you know, not necessarily preparing for a career as a ceo. Right. So what's it, I guess I was gonna ask you what's like working with family, but that's not really, it wasn't really your experience. So what was it like really? And I know you've told this story many times, what was it like basically being thrust into an ongoing organization, but as a family member?

Amanda Holmes (03:08): Yes, it, well, it was hard because me and my father were very close. I was actually born in his birthday. We shared the same birthday February 13th, and it was as if just the stars aligned. And so losing him was like losing air . It was like I didn't know where up was or down was. I couldn't eat, I couldn't sleep. So getting all of that while at the same time, like I can remember just days after his funeral. And the only reason why I remember that cuz all that time is such a blur, but I just remember all of these flowers around my room from his funeral and I was sitting there and they had just sent me the PNL of all the companies and it was the first time I'd ever seen it. And it just felt like this PNL was never ending. I kept scrolling and scrolling and I just broke down.

(03:55): It was like, how, how is this possible that, So my father battled with cancer for a year and a half before he passed. And he spent 352 nights in the hospital and never once did he spend it alone. So it was me, my mom, and my brother. We just, we rotated spending all-nighters with him. So I spent easily a hundred allnighters with my father in the hospital. Never once did he say, Hey Amanda, let me explain to you what my businesses are . Let me explain to you who runs them. Let me tell you about where I'd like this to go. We never had that dialogue and there was time and I speak on that because I think it's critical that more parents take responsibility for the fact that there are other people that if you leave this world without a plan, you're hindering them.

(04:48): So I do talk on that every once in a while. But, so it was utterly shocking and it really is. I look back and I think it's a miracle that we're here today based on the fact that Right, I knew nothing. I was trying to get over the loss of my father while couple hundred staff, you know, this crazy enterprise. But here we are. I stepped in and it took me two years to step in cuz it just looked like, this is crazy talk. I don't know why I ever would. But then over time I fell in love with our clients. I recognized that there was something that was really beautiful about what my father had built and it could be carried on. It just needed that heart in the center of it to make it all work. And yeah, I increased our leads by 1176% the first year I stepped in and doubled our coaching clients multiple years in a row. And this year we're up over 300% and that's without the book releasing just yet. So it's a lot of wonderful things. My father had a great system and a great framework for how to grow organizations and I had to learn it from his books and his training programs instead of him explaining it to me. But nonetheless, I think I'm probably one of his greatest success stories just because of that.

John Jantsch (06:04): Right. What was hard for you? I mean you, you, you obviously made some changes, you know, what was hard for you to change? I mean, not necessarily resistance, but just really hard for you to even wrap your head around

Amanda Holmes (06:16): Changing. So we had never processed an order online. My father was very strict around, you know, every sale should come from a salesperson having a conversation either over the phone or in person. So I could remember the first time that I put some pricing online and I took a moment and it was like, I'm so sorry dad, I know you said this, but times have changed and I have to do it, have to put some of our stuff online. So that was a big, that was a big turning point in learning how to do digital marketing was critical and selling things online. And then also a huge change was for me, the people that I surround myself with, a lot of them were very different than who my father surrounded himself with. So I find that the culture that he thrived in is different than the culture that I thrive in.

(07:08): And making that distinction because at first it was anybody that my father respected, ultimately they would say, Well your father said I was the best in the planet on this. And I'd go, Okay. And I'd put them up on this pedestal of who was the best, right? Cause my father said he was the best , even though I started realizing that everyone said that my father said they were the best. So then I started reading through his emails to try and figure out what he really thought of them. That was the way that I would find out. And then the next level was okay, just because my father said he was the best, now I have to discern, is this somebody that I can work with? And there were quite a few of them that did not work with me very well. And that's okay. It's just a little bit of a different modus operandi, but still the strategies are the same. So it was interesting to see that culture shift.

John Jantsch (07:59): So shifting gears a little bit to maybe a more positive, less of a challenge, what's been the most fun for you?

Amanda Holmes (08:05): ? The marketing and sales part. Oh my gosh. Oh, you'll appreciate this John. So I just, you know, I'm in this whole book tour thing going on right now, right? I just went to all these different trade shows. I spoke at HubSpots inbound, that's where I saw that you're in HubSpot Network. Congratulations on that. Yeah, that's awesome. So I went there with a four foot billboard strapped to my back cuz I was looking for a way for people, My father teaches the first thing you need in a trade show is to get noticed. Yeah. And I was googling like, Oh, maybe we'll do a backpack and we'll design a backpack or something. And then I found, I typed in human billboard and this huge thing, it's a backpack that straps, but it's, and it lights up, it glows like a billboard sign. So I've been walking through all these trade shows with this poor foot billboard on my back. I call her Bessie now because I'm very fond of her. And on the last day of trafficking conversion, actually they shut me down because I was creating such a buzz and generating so many sales that the sponsors, the booths were getting jealous .

(09:12): But that's been a blast. And just being really creative about ways to get attention and then converting those, that attention into sales and leads and sales. That's a ton of fun for me.

John Jantsch (09:26): Would you say that your, and I know this is gonna sound sort of stereotypical, but would you say that your music background, your arts background, has brought a level of creativity that maybe didn't exist?

Amanda Holmes (09:38): Absolutely. So the new addition to the book The Forward, instead of saying Dear Reader, I instead said Dear dad. And that was a, and it something that Julia Easton, my book coach at the time, had suggested I do. And when I wrote it, everyone that read that majority of grown men that read it would cry reading it. And they thought they, out of all the every page, every sentence, I made sure that it was some way to double sales. But that letter to my dad, everyone said lead with that. Cause that's going to touch more people than just doubling sales techniques. And I put that into a video actually. And that's been what I've been using to promote the book. So to me that video is a music video. I wrote the lyrics, even though I'm not singing them, they're written. But everything that I had as a songwriter, I put into that video. To me, that's the single that came out with this new edition of the book, which is kind of funny to think about. But man, it is hitting people in a completely different way that I never expected. And it was the most nerve-wracking thing on the planet to put that thing out. I really thought that. I didn't think that people would like it, but everybody kept saying, I love it, I love it. You should put that out. And it's been such a loving response. So yeah, that, that songwriter in me, I think

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(11:51): , describe who C I A CH homes an international works with. Who's your typical client?

Amanda Holmes (11:57): Yes. Okay, I'll answer that by asking you a question. And you probably know the answer to this. What percentage of businesses do you think make it to a million in annual sales?

John Jantsch (12:06): I don't know the exact answer other than it's relatively small. Not,

Amanda Holmes (12:10): Yeah, if you

John Jantsch (12:11): Had to guess, I would say 9%.

Amanda Holmes (12:13): Okay. That's close. That's close. 5% of companies make it to a million of that 0.08%, make it to 5 million of that 1.5%, make it to 10 million. So it gets a little bit better. then 0.004%, make it to a hundred million and beyond. So what we teach is how to get from a million to five, from 5 million to 10, From 10 million to a hundred million and beyond. Because it's actually not about our product or service, which majority of entrepreneurs think, yes, if I just tweak this a little bit more, then I'll get more. Right. If that was true, McDonald's wouldn't be the number one grossing hamburger join in the world. Right? It's a terrible burger. It's skills it takes to grow the business and skills can be developed. So we assist entrepreneurs to grow from that one to five, from five to 10, from 10 to a hundred million and beyond.

John Jantsch (13:07): One of the core concepts. I have actually not, not seen what you've done in the second edition yet, but in the, certainly in the first edition. Well, and, and I know it's a core concept of your coaching, is this, uh, concept of the Dream 100. I wonder if you could kind of describe that. Cause I know that's a big E for

Amanda Holmes (13:22): You. Yes. It's the fastest, least expensive way to double sales . This one strategy has doubled the sales of more companies than any other. My father invented it working for billionaire, Charlie Munger, co-chairman of Berkshire Hathaway. So he doubled the sales of nine different companies for Charlie all within 12 to 15 months. And several of them multiple years consecutively. So he realized that he had a system for doubling sales and it went something like this. So he was given a list of 2200 potential prospects and they said, Okay, go cold. Call these 2200. But when he did some research, he realized that only 167 of them purchased 95% of the space. So instead of going after 2200, he led an intensive dream 100 to just those hundred and 67. Now it being in their face, in their place, in their space, what can we do to provide the most value for them?

(14:14): For him, Back then it was direct mail, cold calling and faxing. So twice a month he was doing direct mail. Four times a month he was cold calling and following up with a fax in an email every once in a while. And he did that for months. For the first four months he got nothing, which, and talked around the office like, what is this? Why is this expert in sales? And he hasn't generated a thing. But in the sixth month he closed the largest contract that the industry had ever seen. And then subsequently after that doubled it doubled now. So by definition, there's always a smaller number of better buyers than there are all buyers. That means that marketing and selling to them is cheaper than marketing and selling to all buyers. And I've even, as I look at this and what you'll see in the new edition is so many people get, they see the Dream 100 and they go, Oh my gosh, how do I do direct mail?

(15:04): How can I make this work with direct mail? And how do I get a hundred people on my list? You're missing the point if you're super focused on just those two things. Because we have so many marketing mediums in our use today. I show how I used a dream One, I focused on one potential dream client and I followed up with them every single day using social media. Every time they post something on social, I'd comment with something of value. Every time they posted another thing, I'd add another piece of value and another comment at another For every single day, for three months, I commented on every single thing that this person said. And three months in they came back to me and said, Hey, I'd like to buy 650 books of the Ultimate Sales Machine. I'm still reaping the benefits of that. Three months of Pig had a discipline and determination.

(15:52): Today they bought another thousand books. It's actually, it was the CEO of ClickFunnels. So Dave Woodward I did this with. So the point is, it's about picking who's one person that could completely change your world. And then can you multiply that even by, you could have four, you could have 10, I'm calling it the Target 12. It doesn't have to be a hundred, right? The whole point is just to get laser focused and follow up with pigheaded discipline and determination, whichever medium that may be. If you wanna use direct mail, that's great because it will land cuz nobody's doing direct mail, right? Yeah, yeah. But if you wanna do it on Instagram dms, that's where I did it to get that client. Right. It could be on LinkedIn, it could be on voice drops, on cell phones

John Jantsch (16:35): Or all of them. Right? Or all of them. Or all of them, right?

Amanda Holmes (16:38): . Yeah. If you only have a hundred, Right? And you're sending, if you're doing Facebook ads to them, if you are sending them text messages, if you're arriving at their door, they're like, you are everywhere. It's like, yeah, I'm only everywhere to the select 10, right? Select a hundred. So they're just amazed, right?

John Jantsch (16:53): Yeah. And I think what's so important about that lesson is you can now afford to spend money and time and energy that is gonna just swamp what anybody else is doing, you know, to that same person because they're spraying it, you know, 10,000 people at a time.

Amanda Holmes (17:11): Absolutely. We had a client, so I went, I've created these bootcamps and a client went through the bootcamp, they went after four people that had already said no to their services. It was a hard, no, I'm definitely not interested. And then he led with an education to those four. After he gave the presentation of an education, he closed 8.4 million worth of sales in just six weeks. Six weeks. And the average sales rep would sell 8 million in an entire year. He did it in six weeks. Cuz he targeted his dream. He only needed four. Dream four to generate 8.4 million.

John Jantsch (17:49): So one of the challenges, I th I, you kind of alluded to this, we're so focused on digital right now, you, you have yourselves firmly in what you're calling old school processes, but they really, in some ways, some of the old school processes are working better than ever, aren't they?

Amanda Holmes (18:07): Absolutely. I mean, take what I just did at trade shows. It's shocking how many people at trade shows have no idea how to have a face-to-face conversation. I'd walk up to a booth and 90% of them had no idea how to start asking questions. You know, I'd ask, What do you do? And they have no idea. They look starstruck. Like what? You're talking to me in real life. I don't know what to do. It's so bizarre how we've lost the frameworks and the basic foundational principles. Everyone thought, Oh, a billboard. Yeah, that's brilliant. But then I also QR code there so that I could collect people that were taking pictures. Anyways, the first few days they were taking pictures of me cuz they thought I was hysterical. But then they didn't realize that now I'm converting them cuz they're clicking on that I'm getting their email and then they're buying.

(18:54): So it's blending of the two. My funnel online got me the sales, but me walking around with a four foot billboard on my back in a trade show got the attention in the press. And now I've taken vi video that I got from influencers in the space that were recording me cuz they thought it was hilarious. And I'm using that in my ads and I'm repurposing it, right? So there's so many different ways that I think in person too. It was just at a mastermind with Grant Cardone two weeks ago, and there were 80 people in the room, all of which would've loved to talk to Grant Cardone. He walked out of the room and nobody followed him. And I'm looking around the room going, Are you kidding me? That's a billionaire. I'd love to talk to Grand Cardell. Why not? So I run out there and I start to have a dialogue with him. It's like, it's as if we only can communicate through a text or on right in an in a social media aspect. He was right there living, breathing. And I handed him the book and I said, You should watch Dear Dad, it'll make you cry. I'll send you a book. And he's like, I will definitely cry from that. I'm sure I will. I love that. Thank you

John Jantsch (19:54): . Amanda, thanks for dropping by the Duct Tape Marketing podcast. Tell people where they can find all the work that you're doing and certainly get a copy of the new book or the re revised, updated, fully updated book.

Amanda Holmes (20:06): Yes. Ultimate sales is where everybody can pick up the book. It'll give you a bunch of extra bonuses that you wouldn't get on Amazon. And then if you wanna online, I'm a lot of different places, but I spend more of my time on Instagram. My name Amanda Holmes was taken, so I'd use my salsa name Amanda Dita Holmes. So you can find me on Instagram at Amanda dita Homes.

John Jantsch (20:29): All right, awesome. Well, great to having you back on the show again and uh, hopefully we'll run into you again, one of these days out there on the road.

Amanda Holmes (20:36): Thank you, John. It was such a blessing.

John Jantsch (20:38): Hey, and one final thing before you go. You know how I talk about marketing strategy, strategy before tactics? Well, sometimes it can be hard to understand where you stand in that, what needs to be done with regard to creating a marketing strategy. So we created a free tool for you. It's called the Marketing Strategy Assessment. You can find it @ Check out our free marketing assessment and learn where you are with your strategy today. That's just I'd love to chat with you about the results that you get.

This episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast is brought to you by the HubSpot Podcast Network and Air.

HubSpot Podcast Network is the audio destination for business professionals who seek the best education and inspiration on how to grow a business.




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