Marketing Blueprint: The Origin Story

In this article I reflect on the origins of the Marketing Blueprint and show you a way you can steal my idea and use it in your own business.

The formula will help any small to medium sized business who wants to wake up to an inbox full of enquires every single morning.

But it's not a magic fix or get rich quick kinda thing. You have to put some work into it.

In other words, if you think ‘copy-and-paste funnel hacking‘ is the solution to all your marketing problems, I want you to close this tab and go back to those scammy websites that promise untold riches tomorrow, in return for a low, low, early-bird price of $997!

Have they all gone now? Great.

There is some really good news for those of you who are still here.

If you're willing to put some work into this, and promise to stick to the three questions in this blueprint, then not only can you safely ignore 80% of all that marketing rubbish out there, you'll build marketing system that is as simple as it is effective.

You'll wake up to an inbox full of hot, fresh, pre-qualified leads all eager to buy from you today.

Anywa, here's the story of how it all came about.

I warn you – it's a roller-coaster of a ride, and I've been very, very honest…

It's Summer '08 and I'm finally happy

Let's rewind back to summer 2008 when I honestly thought I'd built a business that would be profitable for life.

I'd finally been discharged from my bankruptcy, and we were buying two buy to let properties per month.

Life was great.

Then in December of 2009 the housing crisis hit the UK, and suddenly lenders were not approving mortgages to use anymore (we were classed as ‘high risk' because we'd bought over 30 properties in just 18 months).

The marketing I was doing was working brilliantly – we just couldn't fund any more purchases.

Like all entrepreneurs, I outwardly spoke of the opportunity this crisis would bring, but inwardly I was a wreck.

I felt like I'd finally found a business that I loved, that was profitable and actually helped people… and it was failing due to circumstances way beyond my control.

And this wasn't the first time this had happened.

My second business used a sneaky legal loophole to sell alcohol to thirsty students until 6am – and then the change in the UK licensing laws in 2005 took me from almost £20k a week to less than £1,000 (and yes, this was the cause of my bankruptcy).

I was feeling pretty low.

My business partner and I had decided to reinvest the monthly cash-flow back into the property portfolio, so we only took a small salary from incoming rents.

Plus we were deeply concerned that our lenders would call in the mortgages, meaning we'd have to sell everything (probably at a loss) and repay what we owed.

(We'd bought all the properties using mortgage funds, and at quite a high gearing too.)

In fact, I'd actually started applying for jobs and even went back to tutoring maths for a while.

It all changed when…

Then one day in late 2009 an old friend asked me out for lunch.

I wanna pick your brains on a marketing campaign I've created,” he said.

The morning of the lunch meeting, I nearly cancelled.

What the F*** do I know about business and marketing? I've had three failed businesses and I have a pissing job interview tomorrow! I'm a failure.

But I dried my eyes, put on my big boy pants, and went to lunch.

(Turned out, this was one of the most important meetings I'd ever have as it was the turning point for my marketing career.)

As I listened to my friend's ideas for running his campaign, I noticed that he was talking about high-level stuff, like auto-responder sequences and split testing adverts.

Wait – how many enquires is this currently generating?” I asked.

None“, he said.

So why are you building out complex automation when you're not even generating leads yet?

Marketing isn't about all that bullshit… It's simply a case of targeting the right person, creating a process to build trust, and then putting your advert in front of the right traffic.

NOTE: When I say ‘Traffic' I mean web visitors. Imagine you were creating a billboard – you'd have to decide which busy road you'd put it on.

In other words, where has the most ‘traffic'.

Its the same on the internet – you put your advert on the right ‘street' where there's already a lot of traffic.

I could see the proverbial light-bulb go off in his head, and whilst I pretended that I was waiting for his response, I was actually thinking, “Wait. That sounded really good!

I think I stole the idea

Now I don't for a second think my idea was original.

I've been pigging out on marketing ideas since I was 14, and I think this was just a culmination of everything I'd learnt and tested in the real world.

I'd even unknowingly used a rough draft of this to build my property business – I just hadn't actually thought about it, and condensed it down into three steps

The very next day I got an email from my friend asking me to help him build out his campaign using my 3 principles.

I agreed…

…and of course I loved every second of it!

I started writing more and more about these three simple ideas, and comparing them to other people's marketing systems – and it stood up to almost all of them.

I then read the excellent book The 80-20 Principle, that suggested 80% of your results came from 20% of your efforts, and realised that's exactly what my three step model did.

It removed 80% of the marketing stuff everyone tells us to do, like split testing, automation and cross-platform posting, and just concentrates on finding the right traffic, solving the customer's problem, and building trust.

Then, a few years ago, I watched another webinar that talked about turning processes into 9 steps, and I started work on building the Marketing Blueprint™ you see today.

What today looks like

So as of now, my Marketing Blueprint™ relies on 3 main questions:

  1. Who are you TARGETING?
  2. How are you building TRUST?
  3. Where can I find the right TRAFFIC?

I have since developed 3 sub-stages for each question to help with the answer, but essentially a successful campaign relies solely on the answers to those three questions.

Image of my Marketing Blueprint
My Marketing Blueprint™ for building insanely effective campaigns

And that's what I have built my private consulting business on!

Every campaign I build, or content piece I create is based on those 3 questions.

In fact, you can see them at work in this blog post:

  • TARGETING: At the start I explained who this was for (and who it was not for)
  • TRUST: Throughout I've given you a lot of detail and even admitted making big mistakes (this helps to build your trust)
  • TRAFFIC: I've turned this blog post into a video, and I now put it in front of business owners using Facebook adverts (which is currently the best source of traffic)

Your next steps?

If you want to read my full story, then take a look at this.

If you just want to get started using my Marketing Blueprint on your own business, click here.