How I Gained 7.8 Million Followers In 40 Months (6 Key Lessons)

Summary notes created by Deciphr AI


In his presentation, Alex Hormozi shares his remarkable journey of brand growth over 40 months, achieving 7.8 million new subscribers and selling a million copies of his book without resorting to gimmicks. He outlines a strategic shift from broad entertainment to targeted education content, focusing on business topics to engage an audience of business owners and entrepreneurs. Hormozi emphasizes the importance of clear, educational content over flashy production, and highlights the effectiveness of long-form content in driving conversions. He introduces a new metric, ad revenue, as a better gauge of content success than views, and advocates for content that assumes no prior audience knowledge for broader appeal. Hormozi's six key lessons aim to save others time and money by sharing insights on content creation that drives brand growth and revenue.

Summary Notes

Growth of Personal Brand and Platform Metrics

  • The speaker's YouTube channel grew from zero to 2.23 million subscribers in 40 months.
  • Instagram followers increased from 7,000 to 2.5 million.
  • LinkedIn followers grew from zero to 324,000.
  • TikTok followers increased from zero to 856,000.
  • Twitter followers (SLX, the artist formerly known as Twitter) grew from zero to 617,000.
  • Facebook page started and reached 25,000 followers.
  • Podcast downloads went from 3,000 to 25 million.
  • Email subscribers increased from zero to 700,000.
  • Total of two billion impressions and 7.8 million new subscribers accumulated.
  • A million copies of the speaker's book were sold.

"In the last 40 months, my YouTube grew from zero to 2.23 million subscribers; my Instagram grew from 7,000 to 2.5 million subscribers; followers, you get the idea."

The quote explains the significant growth of the speaker's social media platforms, emphasizing the rapid increase in followers and subscribers.

Strategic Approach to Building a Brand

  • The speaker's plan had three steps: create good content, post it everywhere, and learn as much as possible.
  • The process involved a significant investment of $4 million in team, equipment, vendors, studios, and software.
  • Over 1,000 hours of recording and 35,000 pieces of content were produced.
  • Six key strategies were identified that contributed to brand growth and revenue.

"40 months ago, I started with zero subscribers and a big quote fancy plan and my fancy plan had three steps: step one, make as much good stuff as I could; step two, post it everywhere I could; and step three, learn as much as I could."

This quote outlines the speaker's initial strategy for brand building, which focused on content creation, distribution, and continuous learning.

Six Observed Changes for Effective Brand Growth

  • The speaker noticed six effective changes: from edutainment to education, from 'for us' to 'for you', from wide to narrow, from views to revenue, from shorts to longs, and from assuming more to assuming nothing.
  • These changes were based on data analysis and personal preferences in content creation.

"Here are the six changes that we observed over the last 40ish months that actually worked: number one, going from edutainment to education; number two, from 'for us' to 'for you'; number three, wide to narrow; number four, views to revenue; number five, shorts to longs; number six, assume more to assume nothing."

The quote lists the six key changes the speaker implemented to grow their brand, which will be explained in detail throughout the presentation.

Shift from Edutainment to Education

  • The speaker categorizes content into three buckets: entertainment, education, and edutainment.
  • Entertainment's sole purpose is to get people to watch, while education aims to change behavior.
  • Edutainment tries to accomplish both teaching and entertaining.
  • The speaker decided to focus on education because not all views are equal, they prefer educational videos, and they enjoy the audience that seeks education.
  • The speaker's data showed that people seeking entertainment do not typically transition to seeking educational content.

"On the other side, you have education where the point of education is to get someone to change what they do... if they then change what they do when the phone rings the second time, they have learned."

This quote defines the goal of educational content as changing the viewer's behavior, which is a key reason for the speaker's shift towards educational content.

Transition from 'For Us' to 'For You'

  • The speaker realized that creating content 'for us' led to serving the wrong audience.
  • A business owner friend's comment about not resonating with recent content prompted a strategic shift to 'for you' content.
  • This shift involved changing tactics to serve the target audience better: business owners and people interested in business.
  • Five tactical changes were made: different packaging, introductions, content ('meat'), visuals, and pre-work.

"So recently, a mutual friend came to the headquarters... he said, 'I've been consuming your stuff for years, but recently I just haven't been watching as much.'"

This quote captures the moment of realization that led to a strategic shift in content creation, focusing on resonating with the intended audience.

Tactical Changes in Content Creation

  • The speaker emphasizes the importance of clear packaging, such as thumbnails and headlines, to convey the exact content of the videos.
  • They advocate for moving from vague to clear descriptions to ensure viewers get what they expect.
  • The narrative in marketing about creating curiosity is challenged by the speaker, who believes in providing clear value to the audience.

"So we're going from vague to clear in both what it looks like, the thumbnails, and what we say about it, the headlines."

This quote explains the shift towards clarity in content presentation to better align viewer expectations with the actual content, which is part of the tactical changes for serving the target audience.

Lesson on Content Creation Strategy

  • The speaker discusses the importance of differentiating between entertainment and educational content.
  • Entertainment content has a broader appeal due to its universal value.
  • Educational content must be tailored to the audience's existing knowledge base.
  • The tactics used by entertainers may not be directly applicable to educational content creators.
  • The principle for both entertainment and education content is to increase the viewer's perceived likelihood of getting what they clicked for.
  • In entertainment, confirming the sensational aspect is key, while in education, establishing credibility is crucial.

"A lot of the things that I learned, like many of you, if you are trying to get into content creation of any sort or media, is that you look at the people who are the biggest, right? And so often times the biggest people in media are entertainers."

  • This quote emphasizes the common practice of learning from the most successful figures in media, who are often entertainers.

"Everyone gets value from entertainment, but there is no one thing from an education perspective that can provide value to everyone."

  • This quote highlights the universal appeal of entertainment as opposed to the more niche appeal of educational content.

"If you want to educate and for me when I looked at my videos and I'll explain the data in a second, it became really clear."

  • The speaker indicates a realization about the distinct approach required for educational content based on analysis of their own videos.

Introduction Strategy: Proof, Promise, Plan

  • The speaker introduces a new moniker for intros: Proof, Promise, Plan.
  • Proof: Establishing credibility to show the audience why they should listen.
  • Promise: Telling the audience what they will learn or get from the video.
  • Plan: Setting expectations for how the content will be delivered.
  • The order of these elements can vary based on the content's focus.
  • The speaker tends to lead with proof due to the nature of their audience (business educators).

"Proof is that you prove that you know what you're talking about; you give people a reason to believe you."

  • This quote defines proof as the element that establishes the content creator's credibility.

"The promise is to tell them what they're going to get or learn from the video, and the plan sets the expectations of what will happen next."

  • This quote explains the roles of promise and plan in the introduction strategy.

"I tend to lead with proof and so proof is that you prove that you know what you're you're talking about you give people a reason to believe you."

  • The speaker shares their personal preference for leading with proof to immediately establish credibility with the audience.

Content Composition: Language and Stories over Razzle

  • The speaker emphasizes the importance of language and clear messaging in educational content.
  • Analysis of the top-performing videos showed a focus on language and message over high production effects.
  • The speaker advocates for more substance (language, steps, and stories) rather than flashy production (Razzle).

"75% of the best videos we had emphasize language, emphasize the actual message more than the production."

  • This quote summarizes the findings from analyzing the top-performing videos, highlighting the importance of language and message.

Visual Strategy: Effective Production

  • The speaker discusses the shift from over-production to effective production.
  • Effective production enhances learning without distracting from the educational objective.
  • Visuals should aid in understanding, such as clarifying words on a screen or visualizing data.
  • The goal is to transition from distracting visual effects to visuals that support the content's educational value.

"From distracting to enhancing from visual effects to visualizing data."

  • This quote encapsulates the shift in visual strategy from being merely eye-catching to being informative and supportive of the content.

Pre-Work vs. Post-Production

  • The speaker highlights the shift from heavy post-production to thorough pre-research.
  • By investing time in research before filming, post-editing work and costs are significantly reduced.
  • This approach increases production efficiency and output quality.
  • An ounce of pre-work is valued more than a pound of post-production work.

"If we spend a quarter of the time that we used to spend on Post in Pre, we eliminate 90% 90 maybe 95% of our post edit work and man-hours."

  • This quote demonstrates the effectiveness of investing in pre-production research to reduce post-production efforts and costs.

"An ounce of pre-work is worth a pound of post."

  • This quote is a play on the saying "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure," emphasizing the value of preparation over remediation.

Theme 1: Content Focus Shift

  • The podcast host is narrowing the content focus to business-related topics.
  • They recognize that audiences have specific interests, such as business, relationships, college, food, and lifestyle.
  • The decision to focus on business content stems from the host's comfort and expertise in the area.
  • The host acknowledges that their previous broader approach did not resonate with their core audience, which is business owners.

"Instead of talking about relationships and college and food and lifestyle, I'm going to be narrowing down or doubling down on business, business models, business leverage, and selling in a business."

  • This quote explains the host's decision to concentrate on business topics, indicating a strategic pivot to align with their strengths and audience interests.

"People who like Entertainment also just want more entertainment... people who watch relationship stuff want more relationship stuff... people who want to learn about college are people trying to make a decision about college... people who want to learn about food they watch other food videos and people want about lifestyle probably watch other lifestyle videos."

  • The quote discusses audience content preferences, emphasizing that viewers typically seek out more of what they are interested in, which justifies the host's content refocusing.

Theme 2: Importance of Relevant Metrics

  • The host challenges the traditional focus on views as the primary metric for content success.
  • They introduce ad revenue as a more relevant metric, especially for business-focused content.
  • Ad revenue is a faster feedback metric that correlates more closely with business objectives.
  • The host emphasizes the importance of paired metrics, combining quality and quantity, to evaluate content performance effectively.

"Before this, we used to track views as our primary metric... but in that time period of doing a deal every six to twelve months because we buy companies... we began seeing a much closer correlation with faster feedback metrics."

  • This quote highlights the shift from tracking views to faster feedback metrics, which better align with the host's business cycle and objectives.

"The metric that stood out as fastest and most measurable was ad revenue... ad revenue is not how I make my money... ad revenue is an important metric that we can use for everything else."

  • The host explains that while ad revenue is not their main income source, it serves as a valuable metric for measuring content performance and guiding business decisions.

Theme 3: Ad Revenue as a Leading Indicator

  • The host discovered that ad revenue is a leading performance indicator for their content strategy.
  • Ad revenue is calculated by multiplying the number of views by the revenue per view (RPM).
  • High ad revenue indicates engagement from the desired audience, in this case, business owners.
  • The host's team uses ad revenue data to assess content performance and make informed decisions.

"Ad revenue... comes from two things: number of views times revenue per views... it takes into account the quality of the audience."

  • This quote explains the composition of ad revenue and its significance in reflecting the quality of the audience, which is critical for business-focused content.

"The month with the highest RPMs and ad revenue also created the most book sales, the most opt-ins, and the most business applications... despite the increase in views our ad revenue dropped by half."

  • The host shares a correlation between ad revenue and other business metrics, demonstrating ad revenue's predictive value for business success.

Theme 4: Content Length Strategy

  • The host discusses the misconception that short-form content (shorts) leads viewers to long-form content (longs) and ultimately to customer conversion.
  • Data shows that shorts viewers tend to watch more shorts, while longs viewers prefer longs, indicating distinct audience behaviors.
  • The podcast host decides to focus more on long-form content, which drives more conversions for their business.
  • The strategy includes adapting short-form content to maintain volume but with a stronger emphasis on business topics.

"Shorts viewers watch more shorts and long viewers watch more Longs and customers buy more... we are going to double down on more Longs about that stuff."

  • The quote clarifies the decision to prioritize long-form content, as it aligns with customer conversion goals.

Theme 5: Assumptions in Content Creation

  • The host addresses the mistake of assuming the audience is already familiar with them or their brand.
  • They stress the importance of creating content that is accessible and engaging for new viewers.
  • The host suggests using more descriptive and informative headlines to attract a broader audience.

"Assume more means I made content assuming people already knew me... if you want your content to bring people who don't know you... then you can't assume they do."

  • This quote emphasizes the need to create content without assuming audience familiarity, ensuring it is welcoming to new viewers.

"Business influencer crushes haters and shows how you can too... day in the life of a $200 million per year CEO."

  • The host provides examples of revised headlines that are more descriptive and likely to attract viewers who are not already familiar with them or their content.

Key Theme: Content Strategy for Audience Engagement

  • Introduce oneself in every piece of content to make it welcoming for new viewers.
  • Explain why the audience should listen to you in every piece of content.
  • Avoid inside jokes or fully explain them to include new viewers.
  • Act as if you're always addressing someone who doesn't know you to make content enjoyable for newcomers.
  • Reintroduce popular past content for new audience members who may have missed it.
  • Use consistent introductions to create positive associations with your content.
  • Add small variations to introductions to cater to both new and existing audience members.

"So we go from they know me to introducing yourself every time so earlier I was like I'm Alex Rosi this is what I do this is the subscribers I've gotten whatever we introduce ourselves."

This quote emphasizes the importance of introducing oneself in every piece of content to familiarize new audience members with who you are and what you do.

"Tell people why they should listen to you every time."

This quote suggests that content creators should clearly articulate their value proposition to the audience in each piece of content.

"If you tell an inside joke and someone doesn't understand the inside joke guess where they are on the outside."

This quote highlights the exclusion that new viewers might feel if they do not understand an inside joke, potentially impacting their engagement and spending.

"Would you rather fewer people know who you are or more people who have no clue?"

The quote presents a rhetorical question about the trade-off between retaining existing audience members and attracting new ones.

"Warm people like the reminders and cold people need the introduction."

This quote explains that both familiar and new audience members benefit from introductions—reminders for the former and essential information for the latter.

"Just post it again and then let me know how it does."

The speaker suggests reposting successful past content to reach new audience members who have not seen it before.

"We need to be reminded more than we need to be taught."

This quote reflects the human tendency to benefit from repeated exposure to ideas, even if they are not new.

"If those shows that spend gazillions of dollars on testing chose to think that despite selling more advertising space it was worth having the same exact theme song and introduction for the show don't you think it might be worth that for us too."

The speaker uses the example of television shows to illustrate the effectiveness of consistent introductions in building and maintaining an audience.

"The Simpsons has the longest standing Show to my knowledge that has existed on television and the introduction is the same now Bart would be like 70 by now or whatever his actual age would be if it was actual humans."

The speaker uses "The Simpsons" as an example of a show that maintains a familiar introduction while adding subtle variations to keep it interesting for all viewers.

Key Theme: The Importance of Content Efficiency

  • Content creation should focus on efficiency, maximizing output with limited resources.
  • The goal is to attract the right people with the resources available.
  • Consistent posting is key; anything is better than nothing.
  • Some content strategies work better than others and should be prioritized.
  • Content strategies evolve over time, requiring entrepreneurs to adapt.

"The game at least as I see an entrepreneur entrepreneurship is figuring out what's my biggest bang for a buck."

This quote conveys the concept of maximizing efficiency in content creation to get the most return on investment.

"Anything works better than nothing so raise your hand right now if you haven't made a piece of content in 90 days."

The speaker encourages consistent content creation, emphasizing that any effort is better than inactivity.

"Some things work better than others and three nothing works forever."

This quote acknowledges that while some strategies are more effective, no strategy remains effective indefinitely, necessitating ongoing adaptation.

"The requirement of the entrepreneur is to start doing something see what works better and then do as much of that as they possibly can for as long as they can until it slows down and then figure out what the next thing to do is."

The speaker outlines the entrepreneurial process of experimenting with content, identifying successful strategies, and continually adapting to maintain effectiveness.

Key Theme: Educational and Promotional Offerings

  • The speaker offers various resources for different stages of business development.
  • Free courses and trainings are available for those just starting out or further along in their business journey.
  • The speaker emphasizes the importance of applying what is learned to see real-world results.

"I'm the co-founder of the school games inside you'll find courses full day trainings the easiest business model they know of to use this med this Media stuff."

The speaker promotes their educational platform, which provides resources for learning and applying media strategies in business.

"Right now 33.44% of people who finish their first month make their first dollar online by starting an online community."

This quote shares a success metric from the speaker's educational platform, suggesting its effectiveness in helping people monetize online.

"I wrote These two books right now which have 25,000 F store reviews they sold a million plus copies and I make courses for each of those books that are free on my site."

The speaker promotes their books and the corresponding free courses available, positioning themselves as a knowledgeable source in the field.

"For the love of God just do one of the things so you can get a tiny percent of that $4 million and the 35,000 pieces of content and the Thousand hours that I spent recording just do one of them so you can take that lesson for you."

The speaker emphasizes the importance of taking action and applying lessons learned to benefit from their extensive experience and investment in content creation.

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