We usually do Where Are They Now? episodes on AskPat for the end of the year, but this year, we had so many great success stories that we decided to keep going. This week, we check back in with Lea Pica of leapica.com. She teaches people and businesses how to present data stories that inspire action. When she was last on the show, in Episode 1055, I recommended she look at a favorite book of mine, Rocket Fuel (Amazon link), and think about how she could use a team to help her get more done.
What was fun about checking in with Lea is that she did follow my advice, but it turned out to be a stepping stone to help her realize what she really needed to do. While she did start out using an OBM, taking her organization to the next level made her realize that she had a real need for automation. At the time, she was teaching her course live, and she started to hear that it was a major sticking point for people who couldn’t necessarily make the times she offered. What she ended up realizing was that turning her material into an online course would make her audience feel like they weren’t missing out on anything.
As Lea says, “I was very attached to the idea that I had to teach it live because that’s all I’ve ever done.” In the end, she ended up creating something on Teachable and working with Reachable, an agency devoted to helping you optimize for the platform. She got the help she needed, but in a more focused and targeted way that fed revenue directly back into her business. The results have been extraordinary, and I think it’s a great example of finding the help you need right now to build your business for the long haul.
If you want to be considered for a coaching session, apply via the form at AskPat.com.
Today’s sponsor is FreshBooks, who make the best financial management software out there. It’s ridiculously easy to use and their interface is highly-visual and super-intuitive. You can actually get an unrestricted, thirty-day trial for free; just go to FreshBooks.com/askpat and enter “Ask Pat” in the “How Did You Hear About Us?” section.
Pat Flynn: What's up everybody? Pat Flynn here. Happy new year and welcome to a brand new episode of AskPat 2.0. This is Episode 1,101, that is a mouthful. Wow. And today we're doing another one of our Where Are They Now episodes. We usually do them until the end of the year, but we had so many great ones and wanted to bring more people on who were coached early last year to come back on the show to tell us, well how did things go after receiving the advice through my coaching and what did you do and how are things going? So today we're talking with Lea Pica. You can find her at leapica.com. She's all about presentations, visualizations, really how to present data stories that inspire action. She helps other business owners, other corporations, learn how to do that very well. And that obviously has potential for high ROI and businesses and B2B type stuff.
So she came on earlier in the year. What episode was it? That was Episode 1055, so that was back in February. That was actually Valentine's Day of 2019, almost an entire year ago. And here she is back again today to tell us what happened, some of the big changes that were made and the implementation that happened and what happened as a result. Just a little teaser, what I coached her on, she did and is no longer doing anymore. But it's not as bad as it sounds because some great things happen out of that. So make sure you stick around here. She is Lea Pica from Leapica.com, here she is.
Hey Leah, welcome back to AskPat, how are you?
Lea Pica: I'm great. I'm so happy to be back.
Pat: It's wonderful to have you on again. And the last time we chatted, we chatted about some big-time strategies. I remember recommending a book to you and I think that if I heard correctly over the internet and on social, you kind of devoured that book and I'd love to know like what has happened since? What's been going on?
Lea: Yes, so much has happened. So on the last show, you had recommended finding an integrator or an online business manager for my business because I was feeling like the logistics of my business were really disorganized and I just wasn't breaking through the way I wanted to. So right after you recommended that, I did devour that book, and I found an online business management team and what was amazing to me was that it was literally like the arm that I was trying to find. It was like having a missing limb. And what they were able to do for me, in a short period of time, was document all of the different processes in my business. So as I'm sure you know, having a podcast, speaking engagements, a blog, delivering workshops, there's a lot of different moving pieces and parts and they were able to help me document and see the bigger picture of how all of those pieces fit together.
But one of the unexpected things they helped me do was try to really launch my virtual web class. Because, at that point, I still did not have any sort of passive income or online offer that my audience could, you know, take online or purchase. So we had some interesting results with those launches. It was enough to validate that the concept of having that content delivered online was the key. But what we realized was that having it delivered live was a sticking point for a lot of my audience because they couldn't make the actual broadcast dates.
So we decided to convert that to my very first online course. Now, as we progressed through the summer, what I realized was that working with this particular team, and I'm sure lots of OBM teams have different price points and things like that, but what I found was that we realized we were a little top-heavy. Where I was paying a lot for accountability and operational management, but I didn't have that stream of income still coming in to balance that out.
So we actually decided to step away from that role and say, “Right now, if we're really going to invest in this business, it's going to be investing in an income stream.” So we actually kind of went a different route with hiring another arm for the business, which was hiring essentially a fractional CMO, which your audience might be interested in learning more about. So I launched my online course this summer on Teachable and I found them right before . . . I was in the midst of recording everything and I just felt like I didn't have a really clear strategy for the launch. [Full Disclaimer: As an affiliate, I receive compensation if you purchase through this link.] And I did some Google searching and I found this agency called Reachable and they specialize in auditing people who have Teachable courses and seeing how they can help advance and optimize the flow.
Pat: They specifically target Teachable courses or just any online course?
Pat: So Reachable, Teachable. I like it.
Lea: Exactly. And I was really impressed with how well they niched to that platform because as a new Teachable person, I couldn't make heads or tails of the sales pages in some ways. Tagging and bundling and all this stuff. And they blew me away with their expertise right out of the gate and they were able to restructure the course in a way that made so much more sense for the launch. Helped me with the launch sequence and with a pretty bare-bones launch, no advertising, no webinar, just email marketing and social, we totally killed our goals. We broke through the Teachable August creator challenge. It was awesome.
What I realized was that—what I would say if I had a major learning is if you're looking to scale, first look to scale in the areas that are going to drive more consistent revenues so that you can start to fund that back, feed that machine. Now that we have this first launch under our belt, we're planning on now creating more advertising and putting that money back in. But what I'm hoping is that when that starts to scale, I can look to having more of an operational backbone to help me manage everything because I'm also writing a book and there's so much going on now more than ever that that kind of management is going to be key.
Pat: That's really amazing. Well, first of all, congrats on the success and the journey. I think it was interesting how the OBM was allowing you to organize your thoughts such that then you knew the online courses was the next step, right? And that's kind of what it did for you. It feels like it was good and necessary, but not a permanent thing, right?
Lea: I think it was just not the right fit at the right time. I could absolutely see working with them again when there's more coming in to kind of balance out the expenses. And I'm ready to, once that course is really starting to feed the business, I'm excited about having more help to launch other courses that will then feed in and do more speaking engagements and start to really fill the top again. Because this summer was all about giving something at the bottom of the funnel for them to actually buy other than hiring me personally.
Pat: That's amazing. And I think this discovery of Reachable, which I just found their website, reachable.agency. It'd be fun to reach out to them just to kind of build a relationship. But anyway, I'd love to know what kinds of things they had you do that were maybe surprising related to how you were going to sell your course and what made it actually work.
Lea: I would love to. So Nick McGuire, the CEO, is a wizard. I have not been able to stump him yet with a digital marketing question. I'm pretty sure he's a big fan of yours. So I think one of the major strategic points that they helped with was, originally this was basically converting my two-day flagship workshop to an online course. So it was going to be one gigantic course that people could log into. So what he suggested is that there are these—the course is really divided into four main modules or sections. And he made me realize that they could each stand alone as marketable courses, there's enough in each of them where someone could take a lot away from it.
Pat: They each solve a specific problem that a person might have
Lea: Right. But they're each a step in the full . . . So just as a reminder, I teach data storytelling and presentation for digital marketers. So each of those sections is a major step in an overall blueprint for presenting data to corporate audiences and clients. And what he had me do was market a bundle of them. So we learned about Teachable bundles—but market the bundle as the master blueprint and then do a really deep promotional discount for that. And that was our launch.
But all of the courses, including the bundle, are available all the time for purchase. We're just going to be playing around with different price points. And we're also going to be testing the Russell Brunson Perfect Webinar blueprint because you know, presenting online is a major skill set of mine and yet I've never done it to promote my own services. So, that's going to be a really exciting next step. That's our big next step.
And we're playing with enterprise pricing for groups, payment plans. But what's really great is that they really tried to help me understand what were the needs going to be and what were the obstacles going to be. So they helped me identify those and work through them in the messaging around that. And every time someone would come back and say, “Well, I really need this to sign up,” they would help me message around that. And they were just a vital piece, a resource to have.
Pat: That's really neat. So, you know, I think the big lesson here is that there's often people out there—even though we are experts in our own fields that we want to teach it and we have this passion to help others—there's a lot of things that are involved with building a business that you know, there are people who they have expertise in this. And a lot of times you can get that information for free from podcasts and other resources and other times, especially if it relates to something that has a dollar sign to, it may be worth investing into such as what you found here. So where are you at now and what's the plan for you moving forward? I'm curious.
Lea: The next big push is going to be marketing around payment plans and enterprise pricing. But the big piece is going to be launching a promotional webinar around this and even possibly going after the Brunson model where I'm giving a live webinar every two weeks, closing the cart, and then restarting again. We have to test to see because we have a corporate audience with an approval process and all of those nuances and we're going to be figuring out how my book is going to fit into that whole funnel, where it's going to be talking about more of the why, planting the seeds. The way we're going about this process is not a fit and here's some of the how, but the course is going to be the real tool belt for the how.
Pat: That's really cool. That's so awesome. The course wasn't even really a thing that a lot the last time we talked.
Lea: No, because I was very attached to the idea that I had to teach it live, because that's all I've ever done. So when we had kind of a pretty abysmal second run of the web class and so many people said, “I'm ready to take this, but I can't make it live.” Even though they would have lifetime access to the recording, there was some sort of block that they were missing the full value because it would have been a live class. So, that was the decision. And I have to tell you, when I finally detached from the idea that I have to teach everyone personally, every module I recorded was like a bit of freedom. I could hear a key turning every time going, “Oh, I'm almost there, it almost doesn't need me anymore to serve such a much wider audience than I am now.”
Pat: That's epic. That is so cool. How did you get over that? Because I think a lot of people who—especially if they've been doing that for a long time and you've felt what it's like to actually help people in person and live—I imagine that a lot of the things going through your head were like, “I can't help people that that way and it's not going to be as good.” How did you get over that?
Lea: You know, I took a hard look at my library of courses, recorded courses that I've purchased and I thought to myself, if that person hadn't decided to detach and didn't record that for me, I would've never had this information. And I thought, “There's only one of me, and there are hundreds of thousands of practitioners out there that need this information. How am I going to get to them all?”
And I have to tell you, when we launched, and you're sort of white knuckling it on those first hours like, “Oh, please, please, please,” because you're really not sure if anyone's going to buy it in this form. And then we had a really solid first day, but then they just kept coming in at a nice clip and the money just appeared. It felt like freedom because there were no invoices to clients. There were no POs to fill out and paper checks to track down. I recalled when you wrote in your book, Let Go (Amazon link), where you talked about where you woke up and there was this money from this work that you had done. That was the exact moment that came to mind when I checked my sales the next morning.
Pat: That's so incredible and just so proud of you. Just keep up the good work. Lea, what would you say to everybody listening who's just like, “Oh my gosh, you took action. You've made some pivots but things are going well.” What advice would you offer those who are where you were sort of the last time you were on the show and you were kind of in the middle of building things and figuring things out and you had things that were working but you were wanting to optimize it and here you are now. What would you tell your earlier self?
Lea: I would tell my earlier self to keep searching for the right help because, like you said, I think a lot of times entrepreneurs, when we start out, we want to be this jack of all trades and we want to be the last word on everything. But we can stray from that zone of genius that we know so well. Where I know I should be drafting courses on advanced charting and the hero's journey and the stuff that really gets me fired up. I don't want to be programming tags in ActiveCampaign, as much as I love it, or fiddling with the backend mechanics of webinar platforms and even trying to figure out the whole strategy of how the funnel all ties together. So I would tell myself, listen to your gut instinct and seek out the kind of help where your zone of genius ends and someone else's begins.
Pat: Beautiful. Lea, thank you so much for coming on and giving us an amazing update. I'd love to maybe check in with you again down the road to see kind of what else is it going on, if you don't mind.
Lea: Anytime, I'm always willing to check in.
Pat: Thank you so much. Where can people go to check out what you've got going on?
Lea: Well, I'd love for people to check out the actual boot camp. It's at leapica.com/bootcamp. The full name is “The Data Presentation and Storytelling Boot Camp” and for me, it is the comprehensive tool belt that I use to present data stories that engage the audiences' attention and inspires them to act.
Pat: Thank you so much. Hope everybody goes there and Lea, congrats and keep up the great work.
Lea: Oh thanks. And I just so appreciate that you check in with your audience and followers and get to share all of the knowledge.
Pat: I know, this is fantastic. This is great. This is I think the fifth one I've done in the last couple of weeks and every time I just am beaming with a smile at the end because it's just, I'm so proud of you guys for doing things and making things happen is just another one in the books. This is great. Thank you, Lea.
Lea: Thank you, Pat, for everything.
Pat: Alright. I hope you enjoyed that episode of AskPat. Lea, thank you so much for coming on and I look forward to checking out on you again in the future just to kind of see how things are going. Super proud of you and well done on the course launch and mostly just the mental aspect of opening up and allowing yourself and letting go a little bit about the fact that you don't have to be there in order to help people. I mean, obviously I could've told you that, but it was so great for you to kind of learn firsthand and get some help along the way, too. For me in my courses, it happens all the time is one of the beauties of online courses. And perhaps, maybe because you were in B2B and doing some corporate stuff, it just seemed less possible. But man, you're crushing it now. So keep up the good work.
I love that and I love all of you for listening and sticking around as well. If you have a chance, if you haven't done so already, please subscribe to AskPat wherever you're listening to this podcast right now. And if you're listening on the website, just find your favorite podcast app and look up AskPat or Pat Flynn and you'll find my show and some other shows that I host there as well. Would love to have you on as a regular.
And finally, just to make sure that if you want to apply for coaching, just like I did with Lea back in February of 2019, all you have to do is go to askpat.com, find the application button right there on that page and then you're all set. And I may select you in the future for a conversation and a coaching call and we'll take it from there. And I'm just here to serve. We get so many requests, but honestly, I'm just so thankful for all of you who have filled out an application. And even if you fill it out a year ago, two years ago, I still may reach out to you because I love to mix up the types of episodes. I love to share different kinds of success stories, those kinds of things. Hint, hint, for those of you who are keeping up with what I would actually select.
But anyway, thank you so much, I appreciate you. Happy new year to all of you and I hope that you'll join me in making this year the best year ever. And you can do that by subscribing to the show if you haven't already. Thanks so much. And as always, Team Flynn for the win.
Sign up to receive email updates
Enter your name and email address below and I'll send you periodic updates about the podcast.